n this paper I will consider some of the major implications westerneducation had, and continues to have,upon the Antipolo/Amduntug Ifugaoof the Philippines, and identify severalavenues the Ifugao have taken to pre-serve their cultural identity in themidst of such powerful influences. Toaccomplish this I will first look at theeducational philosophies of the twomajor international educationalplayers in the history of the Philip-pines, the Spanish and the American.I will follow this by identifying how thetwo educational systems influencetraditional Ifugao values.
The Antipolo/Amduntug Ifugao,numbering around 3,200, make theirhome in the Kiangan municipality of Ifugao Province, Central Luzon, Philip-pines. They are located on the southwestern border of Ifugao. The AntipoloIfugao speak the Keley-i Kallahan dia-lect while the Amduntug Ifugao speak Yattuka, both of which are included inKallahan, a subfamily of Ifugao, abranch of the Malayopolynesian lan-guages (McFarland 1980:76). Thesepeople, along with other groups of Ifu-gao, are known for creating the eighthwonder of the world—the Ifugao riceterraces. If stretched out in a linethese “stairsteps to the sky” wouldspan approximately 20,000 miles.They also depict the race that devel-oped centuries ago and maintainsthem currently today: industrious,ingenious, persistent, strong, andindependent.
One should not view tribal socie-ties in isolation from the influences of urban society (Steffen 1993). Whilegeographical distances may existbetween some tribal societies andurban societies, the latter often haveplans for, and exert a powerful holdupon the former. For example, urban-ites provide public education for tri-bals (often with teachers from outsidethe tribal dialect). The urbanites ask for land declarations so they canissue land titles, and in some cases,collect taxes. Tribals institute commu-nity councils to interact with thenational government. They go to townto purchase necessities and to selltheir goods. As for education, tribalfamilies often find themselves sendingtheir children to cities for higher edu-cation. In the religious realm, majorreligions, such as, Catholicism orIslam, etc.., continue to have somesuccess with tribals, if not directly inthe geographical areas, then through
their children sent to them for educa-tion in the cities. Wise Christian work-ers do not minimize the preexistinglinkages between the urban, peasant,and tribal societies.
Wolf (1982), who takes a Marxistdiachronic view of history, argues thatno society stands totally independentfrom any other society. He contentsthat the world is totally integratedwith each specific part affected tosome extent by the whole. The basiccause for these global linkages,argues Wolf, is economics, that is, thesystem of how goods are produced,consumed, dispersed, and so forth. Associeties are inevitably broughttogether through economics andmodes of production, conflict results,creating continual change to all socie-ties involved. Wolf views the conflictinduced changes as positive.The Philippines has experiencedthe control of three foreign powers:the Spanish, the American twice, andthe Japanese. The Spanish and Amer-icans brought with them their educa-tional systems which has had signifi-cant influence on all Filipinos,including the Ifugao highlanders. TheAntipolo/Amduntug Ifugao cannot be
by Tom Steffen
International Journal of Frontier Missions Vol. 15:2, Apr.-June 1998
Global Implications of WesternEducation on the Antipolo/AmduntugIfugao
One should resist the temptation to view tribal societies in isolation from the influences of Westernculture. This article shows the tremendous influence Western society has had on tribalcultures to the degree that some have become peasant societies. What and how they are affected alsoinfluences the way tribal and peasant peoples perceive Christianity.