Essay The Kalinga

The Kalinga

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Anthropology Essays
Examines culture of ethnolinguistic group in Philippines, geography, households, childhood, religion, threats from progress.

The Kalingas of the Philippines came into the news a decade ago because they were threatened by a plan by then-President Ferdinand Marcos to build four large hydroelectric dams and one smaller diversion dam in the Chico River Valley. This was to be the largest hydroelectric facility in Southeast Asia and would have flooded 1,400 kilometers of land, displacing some 85,000 people, primarily of the Bontoc and Kalinga tribes. The Kalingas, however, have a strong religious bond with their land and believe that their well-being depends upon the ongoing collective efforts of the living and the dead, and so they believe they must remain where the dead have been buried throughout their history. The Kalinga attribute most illnesses, accidents, and misfortunes to displeased ancestral spirits, and allowing their burial grounds to be submerged would bring down…

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