October 16: "The Chinese and Chinese Mestizos of Manila: History, Nation, and Identity" with Professor Richard Chu

What does being “Chinese” mean in the Philippine urban society context and over time? How can a micro-historical ethnographic approach such as biographies to the study of ethnic identities help us answer this question? Join the Filipino & Philippine Studies Working Group for a special guest lecture with Professor Richard Chu, whose talk will focus on the history of the Chinese in the Philippines and on his research on the Chinese merchant families and community in Manila from the late nineteenth century to the present. More specifically, his lecture will examine the different historical factors, actors, and events that constantly shape and reshape what it means to be “Chinese” in the Philippines. 

The lecture will be held at 2:00pm on Friday, October 16, 2015, in the South & Southeast Asian Studies Department Library (341 Dwinelle, Level F/G). Refreshments will be provided.


Richard T. Chu received his A.B. from Ateneo de Manila University (1986), his M.A. from Stanford University (1994), and his Ph.D. from University of Southern California (2003). His research focuses on the history of the Chinese and Chinese mestizos in the Philippines and the different Chinese diasporic communities in the world, centering on issues of ethnicity, gender, and nationalism. He has published several articles, and his first book, The Chinese and Chinese Mestizos of Manila: Family, Identity, and Culture 1860s-1930s (E.J. Brill, 2010; Anvil 2012) examines and analyzes the familial and business practices of Chinese merchant families as they negotiated the attempts of colonial governments to control them. He is the editor of More Tsinoy Than We Admit which features the best historical works on the Chinese in the Philippines, and is currently working on his next book project that looks into the discourse of Chinese identities in print media, and the construction of the Chinese as an ethnic “Other” under the American colonial period. Under a Fulbright grant, he will be teaching at Ateneo de Manila University and conducting research for his next project from January to June 2016.

Proficient in several languages, Chu was born and raised in the Philippines, but has spent some time in China, and is now based in the United States. He has taught at Ateneo de Manila University and University of San Francisco. Presently, he is Five College Associate Professor of History at University of Massachusetts, Amherst and teaches courses on Pacific empires, Philippine colonial history, Asian American history, the Chinese diaspora, and world history.

Event details
Friday, October 16, 2015 - 2:00pm - 3:30pm
DSSEAS Library, 341 Dwinelle, Level F/G