HomeThe Journal of Historyvol. 32-33 no. 1-2 (1988)

From “Tribal Swiddeners” to Peasants and Entrepreneurs: A Study of the Changing Buhid Economy

Violeta Lopez-gonzaga

Discipline: Social Science, History



Traditional description of the Mangyan highlight their practice of shifting cultivation, subsistence economy and their relative autonomy and isolation from other groups. Harold Conklin, in his pioneering ethnographic study, referred to the Mangyans as “forest-dwelling, non-Christian groups (who) live in small scattered settlements, speak mutually unintelligible languages, have little direct contact with each other or with the coastal Christians, and are loosely organized politically (Conklin, 1957). “Such a description needs revision for the said ethnic community has since then undergone some structural transformations which render their traditional classification as “tribal, isolated community” rather obsolete.