An online exercise within the strands of the U.S. Social Studies curriculum through Lightning Studies: (CTCCCs) presents PASÁ PASÂ


Using a “fictive-polemical” etiological chart based on the Philippine Journal of Science and Annual Reports of the Director of the Bureau of Science Philippine Islands during the early American period in the Philippines, WHY ARE WE SICK invites you to fill in the chart with “information” or “data” about your “sickness”.

Completing the chart is simple. (And should be fun!) Please take any direction, form, or interpretation as a guiding framework in doing this. Like a colonial frontier—or to be more contemporary, a Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, there are no parameters. No exceptions. You can use images, texts, et al.  Do a collage, montage. Restructure the lines. The “completed” chart need not to make sense.

For instance, after designing the chart, I considered it as a form of writing an essay about bruising: filling in the chart to perpetually politicize the difference between two different physical manifestations–and almost invisible forms–of injury: PASÁ PASÂ (Bruised all over) and PASÂ (Bruising). All entries have been appropriated from the original reports in the Philippine Journal of Science and Annual Reports of the Director of the Bureau of Science Philippine Islands. (I guess that might be considered as a “serious” track. To be honest, when I get bored, I use Nicki Minaj’s songs to fill it in.)

The chart is available here. Please use the third sheet (CHART_WHY ARE WE SICK_NAME), and refer to the second sheet if you need an example.

The online session will focus on participants sharing how they engage with the chart. More than half of the time will be dedicated on this. At the start of the session, I will speak shortly about the background of Lightning Studies: (CTCCCs) presents PASÁ PASÂ.

You may also consider the following links that provide background on the history of the project.





No need to submit your charts. It would be lovely, though, if we could continue our discussion about sickness, injury, and bruising online and offline, beyond the chart and the online event. And the many intersections we will discover together!


Lightning Studies: (CTCCCs) presents PASÁ PASÂ, a curatorial study on translation in transition through artistic projects, archival materials on scientific and health inquiries, and collaborative production across systems of the institutional and their corresponding infrastructures of showing. PASÁ PAS is a critical layout for contemplating the production of ‘public good’ shared between the vectors of the artistic, the scientific, and the civil. PASÁ PAS can be read through two presentations: as etiologies of bruising, and as being bruised all over despite good conditions, where fictive polemical, institutional critique, and histories of artwork are used as transitional devices to imagine alternative methods for knowing.

The scale of collaboration of anthropology and ethnography within the ideological engineering of public good through the terms of health and hygiene is exposed in a collection of photographs from the Philippine Journal of Science and the Annual Reports of the Director of the Bureau of Science Philippine Islands. The charts PASÁ PASÂ (Bruised all over) and PASÂ (Bruising) essay a new linguistic device of translating the civility of a former colonial subject into the liberal terrain of an imperial power.

Lightning Studies: Centre for the Translation of Constraints, Conflicts and Contaminations (CTCCCs) is an imagined, virtual, and fleeting institution for relational translation. The centrality of forming a speculative institution serves two purposes: as a reference for undoing the overdetermined proposition of the so-called pedagogical models, which could position translation as a critical method and praxis of pedagogy; and as a vector of exploring partially visible modes of organization, such as co-production of discursive elements, conceptual histories, and incidental alternatives through the interpellation and injunction of texts and images.  Fictionializing European Enlightenment’s and capitalist modernity’s transformation, it traces the archaeology of turns and omissions in translation, then archives the ongoing and futural translations of artistic impulses to configure a constellation of discourses.

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