Modern Philippines

by Patricio N. Abinales


Of the 7,500 small islands that make up the archipelago of the Philippines, only around 2,000 are inhabited.

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Cover image for Modern Philippines

October 2020


Pages 396
Volumes 1
Size 7x10
Topics Geography and World Cultures/Countries and Regions
  World History/Culture
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Ideal for high school and undergraduate students, this comprehensive thematic encyclopedia focuses on the Philippines, an important archipelago nation in Southeast Asia.

The Philippines is a nation that has experience being ruled by two separate colonial powers, home to a people who have had strong attachments to democratic politics, with a culture that is a rich mix of Chinese, Spanish, and American influences. What are important characteristics of contemporary daily life and culture in the Philippines today?

This volume explores the geography, history, and society of this important island nation. Thematic chapters examine topics such as government and politics, history, food, etiquette, education, gender, marriage and sexuality, media and popular culture, music, art, and more. Each chapter opens with a general overview of the topic and is followed by alphabetically arranged entries that home in even closer on the topic. Sidebars and illustrations appear throughout the text, and appendixes cover a glossary, facts and figures, holidays chart, and vignettes that paint a picture of a typical "Day in the Life" of students and adults in the country. A bibliography rounds out the work. Modern Philippines is a comprehensive volume on this leading Southeast Asia island nation.


  • Includes "Day in the Life" features that portray the specific daily activities of various people in the Philippines, from teenagers to working adults in different fields, providing readers insight into daily life in the country
  • Defines key terms related to the reading in a glossary appendix
  • Provides at-a-glance information about the Philippines' important religious and secular holidays in a chart of national holidays
  • Illuminates the text in photos that help to illustrate key topics and allow students to dive more deeply into ideas
  • Provides fun facts and anecdotal information in sidebars that help to engage readers
Series Description

Understanding Modern Nations

The Understanding Modern Nations series profiles individual nations that are of interest to high school students and undergraduates, focusing on countries that are often studied in school as well as countries that have made major headlines in recent years.

With coverage of topics such as geography, history, politics and government, economy, society, culture, social media, pop culture, and personal accounts of daily life, these volumes serve as ideal resources for students of geography, social studies, anthropology, political science, and more. Additional topics examine religion, social classes and ethnicity, gender and sexuality, education, language, etiquette, literature and drama, art and architecture, music and dance, food, and leisure and sport.

General overviews of each topic provide students with a basic foundation on the subject, and entries pertaining to the topic—such as biographies of significant people in the field, iconic events, and key ideas—follow each overview. Sidebars and photos, facts and figures that are integral to better understanding the countries, a glossary of key terms, and a holidays chart round out the coverage in each of these accessible, engaging volumes.

Author Info

Patricio N. Abinales is professor at the School for Pacific and Asian Studies, the University of Hawaii–Manoa, where he teaches Philippine political history, Southeast Asian Studies, and Asian Food Cultures. He grew up in the Philippines and was educated at the University of the Philippines. He worked there for nearly a decade before earning his PhD in government and Southeast Asian Studies at Cornell University. He co-wrote, with his late wife Donna J. Amoroso, State and Society in the Philippines (2005, 2017), which one Filipino historian describes as the definitive textbook on Philippine history for the millennial generation.

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