By Nicolas V. Matitu, Rafael Pamplona, and Gabrielle Akeem C. Precia

Note: This is a paper produced under the Internship Program of the IA Center for Intramuros Studies.


Intramuros has been a part of the cultural enrichment for nation-building during the period of New Society through the enactment of P.D. No. 1616. However, none of the previous studies have looked into its role in the said period. This paper aims to reconstruct the time and contextualize the creation of PD 1616 by describing the prevailing ideas, values and political climate of the period. This paper also aims to analyze how the State utilizes Intramuros for its vision of the Bagong Lipunan. This study attempts to trace the responses to the identity crisis and nation-building before and during utilizing the Bagong Lipunan using the Challenge and Response theory to explain how the Bagong Lipunan used the Intramuros as one of the responses in the challenges.

The researchers were able to found that the government defined the Filipino identity as purely indigenous through the speeches of President Marcos. The State appropriated Intramuros as Filipino for the purpose of Bagong Lipunan which can be seen in the laws implemented for the Walled City while reviving its colonial ambiance. The findings show that restoration of Intramuros runs contrary to the goal of nation-building that can be observed in the projects being done. These manifestations enable the researchers to conclude that these contradictions are the microcosm of the Filipino identity itself: unstable, undefined, and arbitrary. It provides an alternative view of Filipinoness contrary to the nativist interpretation of the State. Therefore, the Walled City may serve as a material representation of Filipino identity whereas the indigenous and the foreign meets.

Keywords: Intramuros, Bagong Lipunan, Filipino identity, state patronage.

To get a copy of the paper email

About the Interns

This research paper was completed in September 2021 under the internship of Nicolas V. Matitu, Rafael Pamplona, and Gabrielle Akeem C. Precia

Nicolas V. Matitu is an undergraduate student of Bachelor Arts in History in the Polytechnic University of the Phillipines (Manila). He’s an active member of Samahan ng mga mag-aaral ng Kasaysayan, the official organization of PUP history students. His interest evolves in reading books that focuses on the American period in the Philippines, World War II, and Contemporary History which are also his research interests.

Testimonial: “To be an intern in Intramuros Administration is one of the best experiences of my life. My internship has given me the chance to know important researching skill in History than what I’m able to learn within the classroom. I’ve got developed many skills and have a way greater concept of what to expect after college. My internship has given me a greater understanding of what it’s I’ve got learned within the classroom, and given the chance to use it to real situations. One of the best benefits that I’ve got received is that the knowledge that I actually enjoy doing what it’s I’ve got been studying for.”

Rafael Pamplona is an undergraduate student from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines and taking up Bachelor of Arts in History. Under this program, he is able to garner historical skills in writing research and conference papers. Some of his write-ups such as Ang Hermandad de la Misericordia bilang Katuwang ng Pamahalaang Espanyol sa Gampaning Sosyo-Ekonomiko in 2019 were presented in the annual national conferences and webinars. His research interests are Colonial Philippines, Social History, Philippine Historiography, Philippine History of Ideas, and Identity Politics. His favorite hobby is to read books, that is why he also held extracurricular position of being a college librarian and it became his spare time of reading scholarly works that fueled the aforementioned interests.

Testimonial: “In applying for internship under the Intramuros Administration, I was expecting that I could showcase all the skills that I have learned in class. But what happened during the brief period of my internship is more than what I am anticipating to. I was not only able to show my abilities but rather, Intramuros Administration contributed a lot to my training as a student of history. Under the auspice of Sir Arcilla, I was able to developed the practical and theoretical knowledge I already had. I am grateful to him because he’s not just instructing us what to do and what to write. He also like a hands-on adviser to us who never left us unattended. Even the majority of our sources that we use in writing the research output came from him. Had it not been for him, we could not write our research paper. He even lended us his book that helped us to analyze the data we gathered. We really owe Sir Arcilla a lot. I learned fresh things from this institution and I believe that these learnings will equip me in the near future as a globally competitive professional in the field of history and heritage. The relationship that was established between the interns and our supervisor is not just a relationship preoccupied with the works to be done but rather a relationship between scholars aiming to produce new knowledge. Intramuros Administration brought out the best in me and made me confident of myself. I hope that in the near future, I could work in Intramuros Administration to improve my competence more.”

Gabrielle Akeem Precia is a third-year BA History student at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines. Her college program enables her to hone historical and research writing skills. One of her accomplishments is her paper on Benguet Road: Mga Manggagawa at Implikasyon sa Ilalim ng Pamahalaang Kolonyal, 1903-1915 written in 2020, was presented in a research symposium. Akeem’s research interests are Philippine Cultural History, Local History, and Ethnic History that prompted her to explore uncommon topics such as how the indigenous peoples managed to survive during the Japanese occupation. She is also an active member of PUP Samahan ng mga Mag-aaral ng Kasaysayan. Through her active engagement in this organization, her hobby in photography has developed by her experience in capturing the significant moments of the events organized by PUP Department of History.

Testimonial: “My internship at the Intramuros Administration has given me the opportunity to not only show my skills and abilities, but also to explore more of what I have learned in my field. Although my internship was only brief period yet challenging, it provided me a valuable experience and additional knowledge in heritage and culture that trained me to be better researcher. Other things that I have valued most about my internship is the good working environment with a supportive supervisor and other interns. I am grateful to Sir Arcilla for his guidance throughout this internship.“

Internship Mentor: Rancho Arcilla, M.A.

Learn more about the Internship Program of the Center for Intramuros Studies

Interested in applying for an internship at the IA Center for Intramuros Studies? Email us your CV with cover letter via Address your letter to Rancho Arcilla, Coordinator, Center for Intramuros Studies, Intramuros Administration. For more information on our Internship Program go here.

Note: The opinions expressed by our interns in their papers and presentations during their internships with us do not necessarily reflect any statement, stand, or position of the Intramuros Administration or of any of its personnel. Moreover, inclusion of research papers or project proposals in the online database of the Center for Intramuros Studies or the website of the Intramuros Administration do not necessarily constitute as an endorsement.

For more information contact the Center for Intramuros Studies via
Cannot find what you are looking for? Try requesting for more data via our eFOI Portal.