Putting voice to the silent: researching the Cordillera photographs of Robert B. Fox, Sr. of the University of the Philippines Baguio Cordillera/Northern Luzon Historical Archives

VILLANUEVA, Cristina B. (2014) Putting voice to the silent: researching the Cordillera photographs of Robert B. Fox, Sr. of the University of the Philippines Baguio Cordillera/Northern Luzon Historical Archives. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2014 - Lyon - Libraries, Citizens, Societies: Confluence for Knowledge in Session 118 - Indigenous Matters Special Interest Group. In: IFLA WLIC 2014, 16-22 August 2014, Lyon, France.

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Language: English (Original)
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Abstract

Putting voice to the silent: researching the Cordillera photographs of Robert B. Fox, Sr. of the University of the Philippines Baguio Cordillera/Northern Luzon Historical Archives

Dr. Robert B. Fox, Sr. came to the Philippines after the 2nd World War. He led excavations in burial sites in Palawan; Calatagan, Batangas; and Santa Ana, Manila and studied indigenous Philippine groups such as the Pinatubo Negritos, and the Tagbanuwas of Palawan. Among his collection, however, are 93 photographs without captions and labels that depict Cordillera people, landscape, material culture and social activities. He was not known to have worked extensively on the indigenous groups of the Cordillera Region. In 2012, I had the chance to show the photographs to Dr. Analyn Salvador-Amores, an anthropology professor of UP Baguio. Her initial comments gave me the first lead as to the ethnolinguistic group of the people in the photographs. My enrollment in the UP Diliman School of Library and Information Studies in the first semester of 2013 particularly in the course, “Introduction to Archives Studies,” gave me the chance to actively pursue research on 14 photographs on a full time basis and to connect the images through further interview and the use of primary sources to an Ifugao indigenous burial ritual that is slowly being forgotten. This paper is a revised version of the research paper I submitted as a course requirement. It further argues that information professionals, whether librarians or archivists, should not be content with just performing traditional roles of organizing materials but to conduct preliminary research on their collection to ensure that documents are better accessed.

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