Remembering National Artist Cirilo Bautista

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Cirilo Bautista and his lifelong affair with words

National Artist Bien Lumbera to be honored by writers groups

Beginning  the celebration of its golden jubilee in 2014, the writers’ group called “Mga Agos sa Disyerto” pays  tribute to National Artist for Literature, Dr. Bienvenido Lumbera in a ceremony to be held at Recto Hall, Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), Sta. Mesa, Manila  on March 23, 2013 at 1:00 in the afterno

Jointly sponsored by the Office of PUP President, Dr. Emmanuel C. de Guzman, “Mga Agos …” writers, PUP College of Languages and Linguistics, PUP Creative Writing Center, and a host of teachers’  and young writers’ groups in and off several campuses in Metro Manila and nearby provinces , the big role of Lumbera’s pen and intellect  in the formation of literature with nationalist and progressive orientation, as well as keen robust  artistic expressions is expected to be articulated  by the invited speakers.  Art and culture personalities will speak on the occasion such as National Artist  Virgilio Almario who is also Chair, Komisyon ng Wikang Filipino;  National Commission for the Arts and Culture  Chair and music scholar, Dr. Felipe Padilla de Leon;  literary critic Dr. Isagani R. Cruz , former  undersecretary  of Dept. of Education and Culture;  literary scholar Dr. Nicanor  G. Tiongson;  prize-winning writer, Jun Cruz Reyes and poet Herminio Beltran of Cultural Center of the Philippines,  as well as PUP President Emmanuel C. de Guzman.  Others expected to speak also are poet and Ten Outstanding Young Man winner Vim Nadera, Southeast Asia Literary Prize Winner poet Michael Coroza , prize-winning novelist Abdon “Jun” Balde Jr. ,  president of Unyon ng mga Manunulat ng Pilipinas (UMPIL),  De La Salle University’s Filipino Department Chair Fanny Garcia and a host of young rising writers.

The writers’ group “Mga Agos sa Disyerto”,  actually an anthology of shorts stories in Pilipino which is in its fourth edition (2010) are authored  by  Efren R. Abueg, Dominador B. Mirasol, Rogelio L. Ordoñez, Edgardo M. Reyes and Rogelio R. Sicat. Of the five only Prof. Ordoñez of PUP and Dr. Efren R. Abueg, formerly of DLSU-Manila and DLSU-Dasmarinas  are living.  This group of young writers  in 1960’s whose literary outputs were described by Lumbera as “ a landmark in in the history of Philippine fiction because of its link with the tradition of social consciousness of the Rizal novels and its departure in method and temper from the writings of earlier generations.”  Also proved in the fiction of  “Mga Agos …”, according to Lumbera is “that modernism and social relevance  were not irreconcilable” and as such, “Mga Agos sa Disyerto” sired a more radical fiction in “Sigwa”, an anthology of short stories in the early 1970s  authored,  among others by award-winning screenwriter Ricardo Lee.

Reference:  Efren R. Abueg

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