An inheritance that cannot be stolen: Schooling, kinship, and personhood in post-1945 Central Philippines

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Abstract

This article seeks a deeper understanding of inheritance by examining how kinship and personhood propel, and are altered by, schooling. It foregrounds kinship's and personhood's transformative and historical dimensions with an eye to their complexity and unevenness. The post-1945 generation in the central Philippines considers schooling (edukasyon) as their inheritance from their parents, who had few or no educational credentials themselves. This view reflects edukasyon’s increased value after the war, how people both judge and emulate the old landed elite, and the ongoing salience and elaboration of hierarchical parent-child ties. Alongside this view, children are recognized as completing, redeeming, and compensating for their parents. Attainment of edukasyon is seen to require not only personal striving but also solidarity and sacrifices among siblings. Yet, edukasyon also fosters autonomy and at times severs kinship ties. Finally, as an inheritance, edukasyon both depends upon and generates inequality, with long-term intergenerational implications.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)894-924
Number of pages31
JournalComparative Studies in Society and History
Volume61
Issue number4
Early online date3 Oct 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2019

Keywords

  • kinship
  • personhood
  • siblingship
  • parent-child ties
  • social mobility
  • schooling
  • Philippines
  • inheritance

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