Denise CruzNov 4, 2014
The Making of the Modern Filipina
Duke University Press 2012
Denise Cruz's Transpacific Femininities: The Making of the Modern Filipina (Duke University Press, 2012) traces representations of Filipinas in literature and popular culture during periods of transitional power in the Philippines, from the transition from Spanish to American colonial power, then to Japanese Imperialism, then to independence and the Cold War, and then to contemporary global capital. Professor Cruz questions how these disruptions in power destabilized the elite classes, and provided moments of possibility for writers to shift ideas of femininity in the Philippines and for Filipinas abroad. Rather than focus solely on gender within the Philippines, Cruz considers how Filipina femininity was made through imperial networks from Spain, Japan, America and across the globe. In doing so, she exposes how the making of the Filipina was neither natural nor national, but was actually a strategic response to shifting colonial powers as well as to the demands of the global capital market.