[PAST EVENT] APIA Centennial Banh Mi Lecture presents: Filipino Nurses at the Postcolonial Prelude, 1911 – 1946

April 16, 2021
12pm - 1pm
Zoom - please register
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APIA Bahn Mi: Ren Capucao talk
APIA Bahn Mi: Ren Capucao talk

Eclipsed by the mass migration of Filipino nurses and its economic impact at the turn of the mid-20th century, few studies have explored these nurses’ tenure in the United States since their arrival in 1911. The mobility of Filipino nurses to the US metropole, following the importation of American nursing, portrays entangled social relationships between healthcare, race, colonialism, and capitalism. Using historical and digital methods, this research project explores colonial nursing across the Philippines and US and the agency of Filipino nurses who migrated and eventually settled in Seattle, Washington—creating a site of counterhegemony. In particular, it aims to delineate upon the gendered and sexualized racialization of Filipino nurses amidst American nursing and broader US society. The following discourse helps illuminate present-day issues amidst Asian America, the globalization of nursing, and the Filipino nurse diaspora.

Ren Capucao, MSN, RN, CNL is a registered nurse at VCU Health and a PhD nursing student jointly enrolled in the digital humanities and American studies graduate programs at the University of Virginia, where he also earned his BA in History and MS in Nursing. His program of research utilizes historical, ethnographical, and digital methods to examine the history and racialization of Filipino nurses across the Greater United States. His research supported the creation of the Virginia Humanities-funded exhibition A Culture to Care: The History of Filipino Nurses in Virginia and production of Vox’s “Why the US has so many Filipino nurses.” He is the current Alice Fisher Society Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania Barbara Bates Center for the Study of the History of Nursing and maintains an active role with the Philippine Nurses Association of America/Virginia and Filipino Nursing Diaspora Network.