“Pamana: Voices of Philippine Heritage” - An Engaged Participative Project Conducted Hand in Hand by Archaeologists and Filipino Migrants in Barcelona

Hermine Xhauflair1, 2, Eunice Averion3, Deone Dasallas3, Robert Morgan5, Mark Ramirez3, Bombei Austria4, Mario Llorente Babol4, Paul Simon Quijano4, Anton Montalban4, Jo Varias4, Angelito Lopez4, Nicolas Messieux5

1University of the Philippines Diliman, Philippines

2UMR 7194 Histoire Naturelle de l’Homme Préhistorique, CNRS, MNHN, UPVD, France

3Association Oyayi, Spain

4Members of the Philippine community in Barcelona, Spain

5Independent Scholar

Migrants constitute a category of society seldom exposed to new data generated by science, including by archaeology. On top of that, when they are exposed to archaeological and ethnographic data from their country of origin, migrants living in countries such as those in Europe and the Americas, are presented with information on their heritage by museums whose curators have sometimes never even set foot in the country they are portraying. This situation has been denounced by migrants of all origins, but particularly from Latin American countries, in Barcelona, a city with a powerful tapestry of associations. In this paper, we present a joint project called “Pamana: Voices of Philippine Heritage,” conducted hand-in-hand by researchers and members of the Philippine community in Barcelona. Together, we organised guided tours and workshops at the Museum of World Cultures in Barcelona, and created an exhibition linking the past to the present through the theme of migrations, “Movements and Trajectories of the Philippine Identity.” Through close collaborations between scholars and the Philippine community, activities and content were designed in order to integrate the voice of Filipino migrants in discourse on heritage of their country of origin, as well as the voices of researchers, members of ethnic minorities, artists, officials, and Filipino researchers. Something repeatedly mentioned during discussions with members of the Filipino community in Barcelona is that they felt like second-class citizens. At the same time, despite the fact that the archipelago was once a Spanish colony, it became increasingly clear that Catalan people were largely ignorant of Filipino past and present cultures. “Pamana: Voices of Philippine Heritage” was designed to tackle these issues, encouraging a feeling of pride in members of the immigrated community and stimulating a reflection about its members’ identity(ies). By doing so, we hope that it contributes to the empowerment and integration of people of Filipino origin in Europe.