MANILA, Philippines—Dr. Felipe Landa Jocano, considered the country’s first anthropologist, died from a stroke at his Quezon City home on Sunday at the age of 83.
In a resolution on Tuesday, the Iloilo Provincial Board said Jocano’s passing was “a great loss to the nation, especially to the province of Iloilo, the place of his birth.”
Among his best-known anthropological works was the one on the Sulodnon or Panay-Bukidnon, an indigenous group found in central Panay known for its rich tradition of oral literature.
As a student-researcher at Central Philippine University, Jocano conducted extensive research that led to the discovery of the Hinilawod, believed to be the country’s longest epic, which tells the story of heroes Labaw Dunggon, Humadapnon and Dumalapdap of Panay and takes at least three days to chant in the archaic Panay language called “dagil” or “ligbok.”—Nestor P. Burgos Jr., Inquirer Visayas