Reanalysis of the Historical Existence of the Remontado Dumagats in Sierra Madre
Keywords:historical analysis, aborigines, Negritos
One of the least studied and documented ethnolinguistic groups in the Philippines
is the Remontado Dumagat group inhabiting the Sierra Madre Mountains in Rizal
and Quezon. This tribal group is considered by writers and researchers who mostly
worked on linguistics as a branch of the woolly haired and dark skinned Pygmy
aborigines of the Philippines whom the Spaniards called Negritos. Other sources
claim that the Remontado Dumagats are but mestizos, offsprings of intermarriages
between a branch of the Malays (the dominant race among Austronesians) and the
Negritos. But getting in close contact with the Remontado Dumagats, physically
most of them are noticeably no different from those of the brown skinned and
straight haired Malay Filipinos like the Ilocanos, Tagalogs, Cebuanos, Bicolanos,
Ilonggos, Karay-a Waray, etc. except that many of them resemble the physical
features of the people of South Asia (the Indians, Bangladeshis and Pakistanis).
They are not short and small like the Negritos; instead, some of them are even
bigger and taller than the average Malay Filipinos. This paper dealt with the
reanalysis of the historical existence of the Remontado Dumagats as a group. It
investigated who this group of people are and where they came from based on the
different explanations why they are called Remontado Dumagats; the dispersal of
their population; their cultural distinctions and similarities with other indigenous
people of the Philippines; a discussion of their social and political organization;
and, the cultural transformation brought about by industrialization.
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