Educators and scholars swear to ‘defend historical truth’


More than 1,000 scholars and educators based in the Philippines and abroad posted an online manifesto calling for the defense of historical truth and academic freedom, as they expressed concern over escalating attempts to revising accounts of the years of martial law and the erasure of “personal and collective trauma”. memories of plunder and violation of human rights” under the Marcos dictatorship.

The initiative was launched a week after presumptive President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. named his running mate, Davao Mayor and now presumptive Vice President Sara Duterte, to his cabinet as the next Secretary of Education, a post that she then agreed.

Oscar Campomanes, a professor at Ateneo de Manila University and one of the initiators of the manifesto, said they would carry out censorship-resistant activities like banning books, while condemning all attempts at red-marking.

More than 1,000 signatories

“We want to make a strong statement in defense of historical truth against the relentless efforts to revise the historical record of looting and human rights abuses during martial law and the entire Marcos era,” he said. said Thursday in a statement accompanying the manifesto.

The document is available in English, Tagalog, Ilocano and Cebuano versions. It can be accessible by clicking here.

As of 6 p.m. Thursday, he collected the signatures of some 1,200 people who identify themselves as scholars and educators affiliated with various institutions of higher education, including Ateneo, University of the Philippines, University of Santo Tomas, Silliman University, Polytechnic University of the Philippines, De La Salle University, University of Cambridge, Kyoto University, New York University, and Queensland University of Technology, among others.

The document states that the apparent victory of Marcos Jr. and Duterte in the May 9 election “signals an intensified struggle for historical knowledge and pedagogy, the erasure of traumatic personal and collective memories of looting and human rights abuses.” man” under the regime of his father.


“We pledge to fight all attempts at historical revisionism that distort and falsify history to serve the dynastic interests of the Marcos and their allies and to fortify their power,” he added.

The document also expresses the signatories’ commitment to safeguarding the integrity and independence of educational, historical and cultural institutions, including the Ministry of Education, the Higher Education Commission, the National Historical Commission of the Philippines and the National Library of the Philippines.

“We are committed to preserving books, documents, records, artifacts, records and other sources relating to the martial law period,” he said.

Signatories, he said, also pledge to participate in verifying, writing and teaching Philippine history in textbooks and other learning materials.

READ: Revisionism, Holocaust denial: Academics explain their views on the Marcos era

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