By Gina Apostol
Why this book?
Sometimes I read a book and wish I’d written it. With Insurrecto, I cheered and gave thanks that Gina Apostol did write it. Decades ago, I became obsessed with the US conquest of the Philippines after the Spanish American War and how the people of the islands fought back to liberate their country. I knew Mark Twain protested the occupation. I found military histories of the war against Spain. At that time, I couldn’t find anything from the Filipino perspective. Where were books to challenge the American belief we’ve never had colonies? Apostol brings this lost history brilliantly to life with a contemporary filmmaker and a translator who create dueling narratives while trying to make a movie about a 1901 massacre. Insurrecto is a remarkable work, complex enough to repay rereading.
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