The Racial Vectors of Empire: Classification and Competing Master Narratives in the Colonial Philippines

Title:
The Racial Vectors of Empire: Classification and Competing Master Narratives in the Colonial Philippines
Authors:
Baldoz, Richard
Abstract:
This paper examines the role of racial ideology in shaping U.S. colonial policy in the Philippines during the early years of American rule in the islands c. 1898–1905. The first section of the essay focuses on congressional debates between pro- and anti-imperialist lawmakers regarding the annexation and governance of the Philippines. The imperialist lobby advocated a paternalistic racial ideology to advance their case for American annexation, citing “the White man's burden” to civilize Filipinos as their rationale for colonizing the islands. The anti-imperialists, on the other hand, employed an ideology of aversive racism to oppose the incorporation of the Philippines, suggesting that annexation would unleash a flood of Filipino immigrants into the United States, thus creating a “race problem” for White citizens. Frequent unfavorable comparisons with Blacks, Chinese, and “Indians” were employed to produce racial knowledge about Filipinos who were unfamiliar to most Americans. This knowledge served as the basis for excluding Filipinos from American citizenship on racial grounds. The second section of the article traces the implementation of an institutionalized racial order in the Philippines, examining a series of population surveys conducted by colonial officials during the first years of American rule. These surveys employed American-style racial classifications that ranked and evaluated the various races and “tribes” that were identified in the islands. This project culminated in the first official census of the islands in 1905, which formally institutionalized racial categories as an organizing principle of Philippine society.
Citation:
Baldoz, Richard. Spring 2008. "The Racial Vectors of Empire: Classification and Competing Master Narratives in the Colonial Philippines." The Dubois Review 5(1): 69-94.
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press for the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University
DATE ISSUED:
2008
Department:
Sociology
Type:
article
PUBLISHED VERSION:
10.1017/S1742058X08080089
PERMANENT LINK:
http://hdl.handle.net/11282/309318

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorBaldoz, Richarden_US
dc.date.accessioned2013-12-23T16:07:05Z-
dc.date.available2013-12-23T16:07:05Z-
dc.date.issued2008en
dc.identifier.citationBaldoz, Richard. Spring 2008. "The Racial Vectors of Empire: Classification and Competing Master Narratives in the Colonial Philippines." The Dubois Review 5(1): 69-94.en_US
dc.identifier.issn1742-058Xen_US
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11282/309318-
dc.description.abstractThis paper examines the role of racial ideology in shaping U.S. colonial policy in the Philippines during the early years of American rule in the islands c. 1898–1905. The first section of the essay focuses on congressional debates between pro- and anti-imperialist lawmakers regarding the annexation and governance of the Philippines. The imperialist lobby advocated a paternalistic racial ideology to advance their case for American annexation, citing “the White man's burden” to civilize Filipinos as their rationale for colonizing the islands. The anti-imperialists, on the other hand, employed an ideology of aversive racism to oppose the incorporation of the Philippines, suggesting that annexation would unleash a flood of Filipino immigrants into the United States, thus creating a “race problem” for White citizens. Frequent unfavorable comparisons with Blacks, Chinese, and “Indians” were employed to produce racial knowledge about Filipinos who were unfamiliar to most Americans. This knowledge served as the basis for excluding Filipinos from American citizenship on racial grounds. The second section of the article traces the implementation of an institutionalized racial order in the Philippines, examining a series of population surveys conducted by colonial officials during the first years of American rule. These surveys employed American-style racial classifications that ranked and evaluated the various races and “tribes” that were identified in the islands. This project culminated in the first official census of the islands in 1905, which formally institutionalized racial categories as an organizing principle of Philippine society.en_US
dc.publisherCambridge University Press for the W. E. B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard Universityen_US
dc.identifier.doi10.1017/S1742058X08080089-
dc.subject.departmentSociologyen_US
dc.titleThe Racial Vectors of Empire: Classification and Competing Master Narratives in the Colonial Philippinesen_US
dc.typearticleen_US
dc.identifier.journalDubois Reviewen_US
dc.identifier.volume5en_US
dc.identifier.issue1en_US
dc.identifier.startpage69en_US
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