Monday, December 17, 2007

UP Press year-end blast

The University of the Philippines Press ends the year on a high note by staging Paglulunsad 2007: Ikatlong Yugto at Pasasalamat.

Everyone is invited to this grand book launch cum cocktail party happening on December 14, 2007 at the Balay Kalinaw in UP Diliman campus, Quezon City .The event will highlight six important factors in UP Press, as follows: launch of the third installment of book titles for 2007 introduction of UP Press' new Editorial Board announcement of the UP Centennial Books project the celebration of UP Press authors who won or became finalists of this year's National Book Awards by the Manila Critics Circle the five-year anniversary of UP Press bookstores launch of the new UP Press website The event will start at 6 p.m. Food, music and books will be abundant in this year-end celebration. It is also a way of thanking UP Press patrons and partners. Ikatlong Yugto will complete the 2007 roster of titles. Some of the titles in this third installment include the following:
Best Filipino Stories: The NVM Gonzalez Awards 2000-2005 edited by Gemino Abad and Gregorio Brillantes Cordillera in June by Ben Tapang,Defiant Daughters by Rina Corpuz
Forcing The Pace: The Partido Komunista ng Pilipinas: From Foundation to Armed Struggle by Ken Fuller Likhaan: The Journal of Contemporary Philippine Literature, Issue I edited by Jose Dalisay Jr. Mannahatta Mahal: Collected Expatriate Poems by Luis Cabalquinto
Mostly in Monsoon Weather by Marne Kilates,Sexuality and the Filipina by Lilia Quindoza-Santiago, Sawikaan 2006: Mga Salita ng Taon edited by Robert Anonuevo and Galileo Zafra,
Some of the authors will be present in the event. Balay Kalinaw is at the corner of Guerrero and Dagohoy streets, UP Diliman, Quezon City (near Ilang-Ilang Residence Hall). Dress code for the party is smart casual.
For confirmation of attendance or for more information, please contact: Ms. Libay Linsangan Cantor (UP Press Special Projects Assistant) 0918 249 5377; 920-6863;

Rica Bolipata-Santos wins Madrigal-Gonzalez Best First Book Award 2007

Rica Bolipata-Santos' Love, Desire, Children, Etc.: Reflections of a Young Wife won this year's Madrigal-Gonzalez Best First Book Award. Published in 2005 by Milflores Publishing, Inc., the book is a collection of essays which Dr. Neil Garcia praised for its “candor, grace and humor…”
At ceremonies held at the UP Diliman Bulwagang Rizal last December 8, Garcia announced the winner, who was congratulated by UP ICW Director Vim Nadera and Atty. Gizela Gonzalez-Montinola. Bolipata-Santos received a P50,000 check and certificate. She delivered a short acceptance speech as her children rejoiced at her success, her youngest son joining her onstage and bowing like a performer, further endearing them to the audience. She described herself as a “closet writer,” talked about the sheer joy of writing as her hand moves across the page, and described her delight when Antonio Hidalgo of Milflores said he was extremely interested in publishing Love …

The award is the only such prize that recognizes literary debuts of Filipino writers and was established in memory of Gonzalo Gonzalez. Previous winners are Elena Sicat, Luna Sicat-Cleto, F.H. Batacan, Sarg Lacuesta, Vince Groyon and Kristian Cordero. This year's panel of judges was composed of Garcia, Jaime An-Lim and previous winner Vince Groyon.

Below is the transcript from Garcia's presentation of the winner and other nominees:
The six finalists for this year's Madrigal-Gonzalez Best First Book Award are:
First, Salamanca , a novel by Dean Alfar. This is the only avowed book of fiction to make it to the short list in what has turned out to be the year of creative nonfiction. A verbal conjuration of the magical realist sort, Salamanca is a campy verbal adventure written in Alfar's trademark rambunctious and irreverent prose. In typical postmodernist fashion, this fabulation's impressively scintillant surface—its medium—is quite possibly already the innermost depth of its message. Second, Barbara-Ann Gamboa Lewis's Barefoot in Fire: A World War II Childhood . This charmingly illustrated, book-length memoir reads like a compelling little novel, whose narrative carefully imparts to the reader a sense of its precocious narrator's unfolding life—a life that is by turns impressionable and courageous, vulnerable and steadfast, reckless and prudent. Like other memorable books of the same genre, Lewis's Barefoot in Fire is an eloquent indictment of the utter evil of war, as well as a moving study of the indomitable human spirit.
Third, Science Solitaire: Essays on Science, Nature, and Becoming Human by Maria Isabel Garcia. This book, possibly the first of its kind in the history of Philippine literary publishing, is an interesting collection of nonfiction essays about science, written in a generous and accessible language. In essay after essay, the author strikes the reader as being at once a naturalist and a philosopher—a student of creation, who intimately participates in the very thing that she observes, and who seeks, in the world's tangible and mutable forms, the harmony and meaningfulness that affirm our deepest sense of being.

Fourth, Kapwa: the Self in the Other by Katrin De Guia. This beautifully produced and capaciously heavy book emerged out of the multi-talented author's dissertation in Filipino Psychology. A singular achievement in intelligent fellow-feeling and scholarly sympathy, De Guia's Kapwa is at once an academic inquiry into the Filipino concepts and rituals of the shared inner self, as well as an intricate interweaving of six, richly textured biographical essays on culture-bearing Filipino artists, whose complex worldviews and lifeways the author painstakingly and passionately brings to light.
Fifth, Helen T. Yap's From Inside the Berlin Wall. A series of letters to her family back in the Philippines, Yap's book traces a narrative arc that articulates the “Pinoy abroad” perspective in a way that is remarkably different from the garden variety travelogue, probably because the author actually resided rather than merely toured in the strange and estranging landscape of East Germany, right before the end of the Cold War. This experience afforded Yap the time to piece together her book's fragmentary but finally singular vision—that of a temporary Filipino exile's haunting and haunted inner world.

And finally, the sixth finalist and this year's winner of the coveted Madrigal-Gonzalez Best First Book Award is… Love, Desire, Children, Etc.: Reflections of a Young Wife by Rica Bolipata-Santos. Published in 2005 by Milflores Publishing, Inc., Bolipata-Santos's first book is a rewarding collection of thirteen thematically unified essays that addresses with uncommon candor, grace, and humor some of life's more mundane realities and mysteries: love and desire, marriage and children, family and friends, teaching and writing. The author treads the uneven terrain of the quotidian with an open compass, unafraid to confront and scrutinize even her own intimate fears and insecurities and confusions. Again and again, in these luminous little personal narratives, what triumphs is a clear-eyed self-understanding, which is utterly convincing because it is earned at the cost of so much soul-searching and inner struggle. In these provocative and well-shaped essays, Bolipata-Santos (following the words of Peter Walsh from Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway ) has taken hold of fragments of her public and private life and turned them round, slowly, in the light, to discover designs that are finally comprehensible, startling, consoling, and wise.

A deeply celebratory book worthy of the Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award.
Congratulations to all author-finalists, and congratulations to our winner, Rica Bolipata-Santos.

UP ICW launches LIKHAAN Journal 2007

To commemorate the University of the Philippines Centennial, the UP Institute of Creative Writing has launched the LIKHAAN: The Journal of Philippine Contemporary Literature. Asserts editor Dr. Jose Dalisay Jr.: “(N)o Philippine university has produced as splendid, as significant, and as sustained a crop of literary work and talent as the University of the Philippines .”

The journal was launched at the Writers Night last December 8. UP Chancellor Sergio Cao, one of the individuals who made the journal possible, and National Artist Virgilio Almario were on hand to receive the first copies from Dr. Dalisay.

The volume, containing works in Filipino and English, features fiction from Alwin Aguirre, Mayette Bayuga, Catherine Bucu, Amelia Lapena-Bonifacio, Charlson Ong and Socorro Villanueva; poetry from Raymond de Borja, Mikael de Lara Co, Francis Arias Montesena and Joel Toledo; essays by Gemino Abad, Exie Abola and Reuel Molina Aguila; a photo essay by Vim Nadera, drama from Rene O. Villanueva and an interview of National Artist Bienvenido Lumbera.

The LIKHAAN Journal is available for P250.00 at the UP ICW and at UP Press Bookstores.

Who are the best young poets in the Philippines?

Philippine PEN recently launched At Home in Unhomeliness: An Anthology of Postcolonial Poetry in English . Edited by Dr. Neil Garcia and published by the UST Publishing House, the volume contains 82 poems by 29 of the Philippines best young poets writing in English.
Says Garcia in his Introduction : “(T)hese poems , like the rest of Philippine literature in English, will in fact be largely incomprehensible when decontextualized from the histories that engendered them- particularly, the violent histories of colonization that the Philippines , as a geopolitical and indeed national reality, has endured.”

The poets featured are: Michael Balili, Ronald Baytan, Catherine Candano, Jose Wendell Capili, Jennifer Carino, Mark Cayanan, Mikael de Lara Co, Conchitina Cruz, Carlomar Arcangel Daona, Raymond John de Borja, Cecille La Verne de la Cruz, Lourd Ernest de Veyra, Israfel Fagela, Marc Gaba, Ralph Semino Galan, Ramil Digal Gulle, Sid Gomez Hildawa, Joy Icayan, Mookie Katigbak, Kris Lacaba, Paolo Manalo, Arvin Abejo Mangohig, Allan Pastrana, Dinah Romah-Sianturi, Rafael San Diego, Michelle Sarile, Angelo Suarez, Joel Toledo and Lawrence Lacambra Ypil.

Call for submissions for Coming Soon

Coming Soon, an anthology of erotic poetry, fiction and creative non-fiction on the loss of virginity. The piece must specifically address a first (human, as opposed to something like bestial) sexual experience.
What we are looking for are pieces that depict an initiation into the sexual act, therefore we will not consider works that try to be coy: for instance, please don't send a piece on how some character/persona discovers there is such a thing as fornication, yet doesn't engage in it. We'd consider that a cop-out. Neither are we looking for pieces on, er, giving one's self sexual pleasure. No, no, no. Works submitted should involve at least two conscious people (no corpses, please!), with an exchange of bodily fluids or whatnot. (If there is no exchange of bodily fluids, the work should address the question: But why the heck not?)Open to Philippine writers in English and Filipino. Past published works are welcome as long as they have not yet appeared in an anthology.
Deadline: 31 January 2008.
Editors: Conchitina Cruz, Edgar Samar and Katrina Tuvera.
Please send submissions as MSWord documents to On the subject line of your e-mail, please indicate your genre (poetry, fiction, creative non-fiction) and language (English/Filipino).
Multiple submissions are welcome, but each entry must be sent seperately. Inquiries should be sent to the same e-mail address.

Call for submissions for CFP: The Commons

The editors of Currents in Electronic Literacy (an MLA-indexed, peer-reviewed, e-journal) seek manuscripts that address the role or the relevance of the cultural commons for those working, teaching, or living in a mediated age. The term itself has received attention from those on the far left, such as Michael Hardt and Antonio Negri, to those defending free-market economics, such as Lawrence Lessig. As new media enable us to collaborate, share information, disseminate texts, and pull from the collective and creative resources that the humanities have traditionally celebrated, we face new challenges on a variety of fronts. What are the legal implications of sharing copyrighted (or copylefted texts)? What constitutes "fair use" in an age when most cultural artifacts can quickly be scanned and posted for public consumption? (How) are we ethically and scholastically obligated to evaluate or cite sources that have been read and reviewed by a worldwide community of arguably critical and invested readers? (How) do profit (or exploitation) work when users determine content willfully and energetically?
We encourage submission of scholarly articles and review essays (including reviews of books, software, websites, and conferences) that relate any of the above questions or others not mentioned to the task of teaching and studying literacy.
Submissions for reviews should be approximately 1500 words for individual reviews and 2500 for omnibus reviews of multiple texts or applications and 5000 words for scholarly articles. Submission deadline is December 15, 2007. For questions or to submit reviews email
Currents in Electronic Literacy is an online publication of the Computer Writing and Research Laboratory at the University of Texas, Austin. Currents strives to provide a forum for the scholarly discussion of issues pertaining to electronic literacy, widely construed. In general, Currents publishes work addressing the use of electronic texts and technologies for reading, writing, teaching, and learning in fields including but not restricted to the following: literature (in English and in other languages), rhetoric and composition, languages (English, foreign, and ESL), communications, media studies, and education.
Currents in Electronic Literacy (ISSN 1524-6493) is indexed in the MLA International Bibliography and EBSCO.

Pasko ng Komiks in UP Diliman

As part of the U.P. College of Arts and Letters "Linggo ng KAL" event on December 6-14, the U.P. Likhaan: Institute of Creative Writing (UP-ICW) and Read or Die sponsor Pasko ng Komiks or PASKOM symposium on December 11 (Tues), 9am at the Pulungang Claro M. Recto, College of Arts and Letters, UP Diliman, Quezon City.
PASKOM will discuss the relevance of comics arts in contemporary Filipino life. Four related topics, which foreground new perpectives on a growing popular arts tradition, will be discussed, namely "Komiks in Philippine Culture and History," "The Study and Collection of Komiks," "Women in Komiks," and "Creating Komiks."
In the morning , Pablo Gomez, Patrick Flores, Gerry Alanguilan, Glady Gimena, Dennis Villegas, and Orvy Jundis will talk on the two first topics. Then in the afternoon, the women artists—Sherry Baet, Ofelia Concepcion, Vivian Limpin, Elizabeth Chionglo, Joannah Tinio-Catinglo, and Gilda Olvidado—will talk about how the feminine and comics arts intertwine toward a liberative cause.
Still later in the day, comics creators Carlo Vergara, Andrew Drilon, Andrew Villar, Carlo Pagulayan, Randy Valiente, Jonas Diego, Melvin Catinglo, Rey Tiempo, KC Cordero and Victor Balanon will unravel the energy and inspiration behind their works.
The day long discussion will be synthesized and commented upon by Bobby Yonzon (Mango Comics), Emil Flores, Joey Baquiran, and Lawrence Mijares.
Prior to the symposium, a comics exhibit, featuring the actual works of contemporary and past comics artists will be on show beginning December 8. It will be set at the Galleries 1 & 2 of Bulwagang Rizal, College of Arts and Letters, UP Diliman.
PASKOM is made possible through the support of National Books Development Board, Powerbooks, Mango Comics, WikiPilipinas, New Worlds Alliance, Read or Die, Komikera, Subway Productions, and the U.P. College of Arts and Letters.
Comics fans, students, and teachers are welcome to attend the symposium and see the exhibit which will run until December 14. For details, call Ms. Eva Cadiz at 9221830.