Philippine Traditional Medicine in the Spanish Enlightenment, 18th and 19th Centuries | A Public Lecture | 26 October 2016

on . Posted in Lectures & Conferences @ UP Asian Center

The UP Asian Center will be hosting a public lecture, “Philippine Traditional Medicine in the Spanish Enlightenment, 18th and 19th Centuries” by Dr. Ma. Mercedes G. Planta on Wednesday, 26 October 2016, 1:30 PM to 4 :00 PM, Seminar Room, Hall of Wisdom,  GT-Toyota Asian Cultural Center, Asian Center, University of the Philippines Diliman. The lecture is free and open to the public; seating is first-come, first-served, but participants are encouraged to sign up to expedite the registration process on the day of the lecture. 


Drawing from field research and a variety of disciplines, Dr. Ma. Mercedes Planta presents an exposition on the development of medicine in the Philippines, emphasizing the use of therapeutic local plants and herbs and arguing how traditional medicine laid the basis for the beginnings of public health in the Philippines. She will show how historical processes have shaped ways of life that have led to generational continuities as well as differences in Filipino medical beliefs and practices. Set during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, at the peak of the Spanish Enlightenment and the height of colonialism—historical periods that represent a highly significant chapter in the history of Spanish science—this study also presents an aspect of the Spanish Crown’s commitment to promoting scholarship in anthropology, the sciences, sociology, and critical positivist history.


Ma. Mercedes G. Planta, PhD is Associate Professor of History at the Department of History, University of the Philippines, Diliman. She obtained her PhD (History) from the National University of Singapore. Dr. Planta is also a Faculty Affiliate of the Asian Center and the Science and Society Program (SSP) of the College of Science, University of the Philippines, Diliman. The Editor-in-Chief of Social Science Diliman: A Philippine Journal of Society and Change (SSD), Mercedes Planta is a trained Southeast Asianist who works on the History of Science, Technology and Medicine (STM) in Colonial Southeast Asia, particularly Spanish and American Philippines, British Malaya, and Dutch Indonesia. Her current research examines the development of modern medicine in American Philippines, British Malaya, and Dutch Indonesia.


Serving as reactor is Dr. Maria Dulce Natividad, Assistant Professor at the UP Asian Center. She has a Ph.D. in Sociomedical Sciences/Anthropology from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Columbia University, New York. Her dissertation is entitled, “Reproductive Politics, Religion and State Governance in the Philippines.” Moderating the lecture is Dr. Jose Wendell Capili, Professor of English, Creative Writing and Comparative Literature, UP Diliman and the Assistant Vice President for Public Affairs & Director, Office of Alumni Relations, University of the Philippines System.


The lecture is organized by the UP Asian Center, the Department of History, U.P. Diliman; Science and Society Program, College of Science, UP Diliman; Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Research and Development (OVCRD), UP Diliman; Social Science Diliman: A Philippine Journal of Society and Change (SSD); and the National Book Development Board (NBDB) of the Philippines.

The UP Asian Center offers M.A. programs in Asian Studies with four fields of specialization: Northeast Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, and West Asia. The Center also has an M.A. program in Philippine Studies that allows students to major in Philippine society and culture, Philippine foreign relations, or Philippine development studies. The Center offers a Ph.D. program in Philippine Studies in conjunction with the College of Arts and Letters and the College of Social Sciences and Philosophy. Get an overview of these programs. The Asian Center also houses a peer-reviewed, open-access journal, Asian Studies: Journal of Critical Perspectives on Asia. It has published several books and monographs, and hosts or organizes various lectures and conferences.  

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