Critical analysis of film and literature featured in 4th Marx bicentennial lecture

On 28 June 2018, the UP Center for Integrative and Development Studies (UP CIDS) Program on Alternative Development (AltDev), in partnership with the Socialist Circle, organized the fourth segment of the Marx Bicentennial Lecture Series held at the UP CIDS Conference Hall. UP Film Institute Professor Rolando Tolentino, Ph.D., former Dean of the UP College of Mass Communication, and Maria Ima Carmela Ariate, a graduate student of the UP Asian Center, delivered the lectures for this installment.

Professor Eduardo C. Tadem, Ph.D., Convenor of the UP CIDS Program on Alternative Development gave the opening remarks and Assistant Professor Marivic Raquiza, Ph.D. of the National College of Public Administration and Governance (NCPAG) served as the moderator of the lecture. The lecture was attended by participants from different social groups and organizations.

Prof. Tolentino presented a paper entitled “Marx, Philippine Cinema, Indie and Documentary Films: For and Against Commodity Fetishism” for the event’s first lecture. He tackled the discourse of commodity fetishism in Philippine films, emphasizing the differences in how social and economic realities are reflected and presented in mainstream and independent cinema.

Meanwhile, Ms. Ariate presented her paper “Panitikan Bilang Armas ng Pandigma (Literature as a Weapon of War): A Survey of Philippine Proletarian Literature (2000-2010).” The paper primarily argues for the recognition of proletarian literature as a distinct category of literary expression through the various writings of the revolutionary movement in the Philippines. She mentioned how Marxism encourages the analysis of literature by juxtaposing it with its historical development and pointed out how radicalization in the 1970s shaped proletarian literature in the country.

An open forum was held after the two presentations and Asst. Prof. Raquiza summarized the discussion to formally conclude the event.

The Marx Bicentennial Lecture Series is a year-long event that aims to commemorate the enduring global influence, impact, and relevance of the works of the well-known German philosopher Karl Marx on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of his birth.