Migration, transportation, overseas labor, globalization, etc., have spawned complex and overdetermined consequences—among them the unprecedented migration of Filipinos, particularly Ilocanos, to Hawaii. The Philippines’ colonial history and neo-colonial realities often figure in the Filipinos’ construction of their identity in Hawaii, resulting in their essentialization as unskilled, uneducated, and unassimilable plantation laborers. The decline of the plantation era, however, led to the reconstitution of the Ilocano labor force into the “new plantations” of the tourism industry’s hotel and restaurant sectors. The new set-up is nonetheless rooted in what E. San Juan calls the “integration of Filipinos into US society on the basis of inequality and subject[ion] to discrimination due both to their race and nationality.”  This study looks at Ilocano immigrant writers’ prize-winning short fiction (circa 80s) anthologized in GUMIL Hawaii; how Ilocano immigrant personas negotiate experiences of diaspora, dislocation, marginality, and disempoweredness; and how they create and recuperate a new hybridized space, even as they struggle with exilic life and its neo-colonial realities.


Ilocano-Hawaiian fiction, Filipino diaspora, migrant literature, plantation workers

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Kritika Kultura
Department of English
School of Humanities
Ateneo de Manila University

The Philippine Commission on Higher Education (CHED) declares Kritika Kultura as a CHED-recognized journal under the Journal Challenge Category of its Journal Incentive Program.

International Board of Editors

Jan Baetens
Faculty of Arts
Katholieke Universiteit te Leuven (Belgium)

Joel David
Professor of Cultural Studies
Inha University (South Korea)

Michael Denning
Professor of American Studies and English
Department of English
Yale University (US)

Faculty of Cultural Sciences
Universitas Gadjah Mada (Indonesia)

Regenia Gagnier
Professor of English
University of Exeter (UK)

Leela Gandhi
John Hawkes Professor of the Humanities and English
Brown University (US)

Inderpal Grewal
Professor of Women's Gender and Sexuality Studies
Professor of South Asian Studies, Ethnicity, Race and Migration Studies
Yale University (US)

Peter Horn
Professor Emeritus and Honorary Lifetime Fellow
University of Cape Town (South Africa)
Honorary Professor and Research Associate in German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

Anette Horn
Professor of German Studies
University of the Witwatersrand (South Africa)

David Lloyd
Distinguished Professor of English
University of California, Riverside (US)

Bienvenido Lumbera
National Artist for Literature
Professor Emeritus
University of the Philippines

Rajeev S. Patke
Director of the Division of Humanities
Professor of Humanities
Yale NUS College (Singapore)

Vicente L. Rafael
Giovanni and Amne Costigan Endowed Professor of History
University of Washington (US)

Vaidehi Ramanathan
Department of Linguistics
University of California, Davis (US)

Temario Rivera
Professorial Lecturer
Department of Political Science
University of the Philippines

E. San Juan, Jr.
Philippines Studies Center (US)

Neferti X.M. Tadiar
Professor of Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies
Barnard College (US)
Director of the Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race
Columbia University (US)

Antony Tatlow
Honorary Professor of Drama
Trinity College Dublin (Ireland)