11 February 2016, 6:40 pm – FOR
AWARD-winning Filipino-American fictionist Cecilia Manguerra Brainard, a
childhood in Cebu filled with oral traditions inspired her to be a good writer.

was a time after the war, and when I looked back at it was magical. Maybe in a
lot of ways my imagination was my companion,” Brainard said during her lecture
last Feb. 9 at the Tanghalang Teresita Quirino of the Benavides Building.

said the culture of story-telling in Cebu helped cultivate the material she
uses in her work, from stories of kapres in their jackfruit tree to tales of
their Santo Nino wandering at night. 

“Within our
household, there was a lot of story-telling going on. So here you are as a
child listening to these fantastic stories. It was a lot of material really
that kind of just sat in there,” she said.

themes continue to be the predominant motif in her writings, such as in the
story “Woman With Horns” which was anthologized in Philippine
Literatures: Texts, Themes and Approaches
, a textbook for undergraduate
students and co-authored by professors Augusto Antonio Aguila, John Jack Wigley
and Joyce Arriola, chairwoman of the UST Department of Literature.

her introduction of Brainard, Arriola noted how such stories move beyond the
themes of womanhood and go on to discuss more complex subjects.

Filipino, Filipino-American, exile, homeland, myth, folklore, native
historiography, hybrid identities? these are only a few of the positionalities
that one can summon in taking stock of her work,” Arriola said.

Pantoja-Hidalgo, director of the UST Center for Creative Writing and Literary
Studies, said Brainard and other Filipino writers around the globe help elevate
Filipino culture to an international setting.

their sisters here in the Philippines, share in their triumphs, which have
helped to make our history, our culture and our values more visible to the
people of different creeds and of different races from all over the world,”
Hidalgo said in her opening remarks.

Brainard has
authored nine books, including When the Rainbow Goddess Wept,
Magdalena, Vigan and Other Stories, Acapulco at Sunset and Other Stories,
Philippine Woman in America,
 and Woman with Horns and Other

has received the Filipinas Magazine Award and a California Magazine Arts Award.

event was part of the International Writers and Scholars Series presented by
the center, the UST Publishing House and the UST Department of Literature. Cedric
Allen P. Sta. Cruz


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.