Man of His Time, Man Ahead of His Time: Trinidad Pardo de Tavera, Premier Filipino Filipinist

  • Date: 29 Sep 2022 | 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM
  • Venue: YouTube
A special lecture presented in partnership with the Filipinas Heritage Library
Ma. Mercedes G. Planta, PhD
29 September 2022 | Thursday | 10:00 AM Philippine Time (UTC+08:00)
The lecture will be livestreamed on:
Trinidad Hermenegildo José María Juan Francisco Pardo de Tavera y Gorricho (13 April 1857 – 26 March 1925) Filipino physician, historian, and linguist is the Philippines’ most important scientist of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Trained in the Western scientific tradition at the height of the triumph of science and modern medicine over tradition and popular belief, Pardo de Tavera lived through two periods of colonial rule in the Philippines, Spain and the United States, and witnessed the country’s transition into the modern period.
This lecture will focus on his 1892 work, “Plantas medicinales de Filipinas,” a book on Philippine traditional medicine, particularly traditional medicinal plants and herbs that he had personally collected, studied and identified based on scientific nomenclature, painstakingly recorded, and preserved in local languages and dialects. In the twenty-first century, when biologically active plant-derived compounds used worldwide are being increasingly derived from folk and ethno-medicinal sources of healing, the corpus that Pardo de Tavera assembled does not only showcase Filipino local knowledge of healing as a science that is on par with scientific knowledge in the West. More significantly, “Plantas medicinales de Filipinas” also highlights Pardo de Tavera’s critical and exceptional role in the preservation of some of the world’s unique medicinal knowledge.
Ma. Mercedes G. Planta is Professor of History at the University of the Philippines Diliman. She is the author of “Traditional Medicine in the Colonial Philippines, 16th to the 19th Century” (2017), which garnered the Best Book in Science Award from the National Book Awards of the Philippines in 2018. She currently holds an honorary appointment as visiting fellow of the Center for Heritage and Museum Studies, Australian National University and is the current Chair of the History and Geography Section, Social Sciences Division, National Research Council of the Philippines (NRCP). In 2019, she earned the title University Scientist of the University of the Philippines System, a distinction that recognizes and supports the development of science & technology, as well as encourages and rewards scientific productivity. She is currently Deputy Editor of the Regional Journal of Southeast Asian Studies (RJSEAS), an international, peer reviewed journal that seeks to provide a platform for Southeast Asian scholars based in Southeast Asia to share their research internationally.