HomeThe Journal of Historyvol. 51 no. 1-4 (2005)

Parallels and Contrasts in the History of Muslim Filipinos

Calbi A. Asain

Discipline: Philippine History



This is an exploratory presentation of the parallels and contrasts in the history of the Muslim Filipinos, including their cultural, colonial, and contemporary history. It discusses parallel and contrastive events, experiences, issues, situations, or circumstances involving the various Muslim communities in the country that define Muslim Filipino history and distinguish them from other Filipinos. Moreover, it could serve as a modest contribution to the dearth of historical materials on Muslim Filipinos.

Muslim history is a unique and integral part of our Filipino national history. It enhances the diverse, mixed, or pluralistic nature ofour cultural and historical roots and identity. The fact that Muslims belong to a large minority in our country- being composed of about thirteen ethno-linguistic groups numbering nearly four million people- makes it a matter of necessity to entitle them significant space in our national history. And considering further that their ancestors had been the early inhabitants of this archipelago even before the dawn of the Filipino nation itself, the Muslims should not just be perfunctorily mentioned in Philippine historiography.

But the Muslims themselves should make the first move towards recognition by writing their own history. It is this need that this paper hopes to help address.