By Jonas Staal
Founder, New World Academy
Welcome dear friends,
maligayang pagdating mga kaibigan,
It is an honor to welcome you here at the New World Academy in BAK, basis voor actuele kunst, for the occasion of the launch of Professor Jose Maria Sison’s book “Foundation for Resuming the Philippine Revolution,” the first of a series of collected political works from the period 1968 to 1990, and to celebrate the revolutionary heritage of the Filipino people. Welcome Professor Sison, and your constituency, and welcome to the organizers of this event, the International Network for Philippine Studies and the Linangan Art and Culture Network
The New World Academy is a new school that I founded together with BAK, which invites progressive political organizations to collaborate with artists and students to develop collaborative projects together. We had the great pleasure to have the National Democratic Movement of the Philippines, represented by Professor Sison himself and NDFP representative Luis Jalandoni, together with cultural workers of the Concerned Artists of the Philippines, to come to the New World Academy as teachers.
As I have been given the challenging task to be one of the respondents to Professor Sison later on this afternoon, I will not go into details now, and limit myself to thanking you for your willingness to help broaden the understanding of artistic and cultural practices at the heart of political struggle.
From the history of Filipino resistance for national liberation and the development of social realism as its main cultural practice, there is still much to learn, from Professor Sison himself and from great thinkers such as Alice Guillermo, which I had the honor of meeting last summer. I hereby would like to express my hope that we will have the chance to continue our exchange and collaboration.
Today, the New World Academy is your political and cultural platform – an ideal ending of the first semester of our program.