Bikol modules, papers get funding from NCCA

By Doods M. Santos


Bikol literature is in the limelight once more with two new sets of online modules and two critical papers received the funding approval of the Literary Arts Committee of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA).


The proponents, all teachers, are: Marifa Borja-Prado, Ateneo de Naga University; Jerome M. Hipolito, Central Bicol State University for Agriculture, Calabanga; Ma. Cienna A. Jaucian, Bicol University; and Mark Philip C. Paderan, University of Makati.


Borja-Prado’s modules are on Sari Saysay’s eco-play “Mga Aninipot sa Tahaw kan Salog” from Rarom, Rayo (2018); “Ginutaang Puso nin Batag,” from Ma. Leny E. Felix’s Rekado asin Rekwerdo (2019), the first ever book on food creative nonfiction written in Bikol; children’s story in verse Kakanon an Hardin (2021) by Lorie Santos with illustrations by Jimple Borlagdan; contemporary rap “An Paralawod” by Trykz of Balatan, Camarines Sur; and Vic Nierva’s short film “Sayaw sa Butal,” a finalist in the Quezon City Film Festival. A bonus module on National Artist Lino Brocka’s classic feature film “Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang” is written in English, so it can be used by teachers interested in teaching the film but who do not speak Bikol. Brocka has roots in Sorsogon.

Hipolito, an awarded creative writer and winner of one of two Valledor Awards for Bikol Novel Vincitori Ex Aequo in 2019, was inspired to create modules for five of his own Bikol poems due to requests of public school teachers. Each module comprises three nonnegotiable parts: Learning outcomes, Learning Experiences, and Assessment. Hipolito has served as language and content editor for the learning modules of the Department of Education in 2019, and as Bikol translator and language and content editor of Let’s Read Philippines, a program of the Asia Foundation and USAID.


Meanwhile, Jaucian and Paderan, both PhD students, will present their papers in the NCCA’s Reading the Regions III online conference during the National Arts Month celebration on March 25-26, 2022.


Jaucian uses Sianne Ngai’s Theory of the Gimmick to critique Jay Salvosa’s award-winning story “Cinarding” and Dennis Gonzaga’s flash fiction in the chapbook #WeHealAswang. She looks into “the ordinariness and the extraordinariness of life within a capitalist system with its ploys and how Bikolnon interact with and respond to them in the time of the pandemic and beyond.”


Paderan will use Plumwood’s eco-feminism and Slovic’s Eco-criticism-3rd wave, to read the poems of Borlagdan, Salvosa, Jose Jason Chancoco, Marne Kilates, and Roseville Nidea, published in Sustaining the Archipelago: An Anthology of Philippine Ecopoetry by Rina Garcia Chua.


The modules will be uploaded on Google Classroom for those interested in using them. Teachers may request for free copies from the Facebook pages of Pagsurat Bikol and Kabulig Bikol Inc.


Assisting Borja-Prado and Hipolito are PVMSantos, Fer Basbas, and Edwin Breva Jr., Niles Jordan Breis, representative for Southern Luzon of the National Committee for Literary Arts. Dr Jazmin Badong Llana of the De la Salle University endorsed these module projects to the NCCA for funding and they were approved in the Commission’s Board Resolution No. 2022-169 on Nov. 25, 2021.