chapter  18
American Mestizos in the Philippines
‘Mongrelization’ and ‘Mixedness’ in American Colonial Media Discourse 1
WithBonnie McElhinny
Pages 15

Inspired by John R. Rickford’s anti-racist and decolonial work on pidgins and creoles and African American linguistics, I undertake in this chapter a stylistic analysis of stories about, and the actions of, the American Guardian Association (formerly, the American Mestizo Association), an association founded in 1922 in the Philippines, which had as its primary goal ‘welfare work among children of mixed American and Filipino blood,’ typically children of fathers from the United States and Filipina mothers. Drawing on various newspaper and archival accounts, I analyze the ways notions of ‘race’ and ‘mixed race’ were used by colonial officials from the United States in the US-occupied Philippines to address an imperial contradiction: the promise of benevolent imperial government and future political autonomy, alongside the construction of racial hierarchies.