A Delicate Balance: A Window to the Batanes Way of Life

A breathtaking verdant landscapes and blue waters which is alternately agitated and calm is the popular images of Batanes.  Batanes the northernmost Philippine islands is more than just a weekend getaway,  it has long been part of a traveler’s must-go-and-experience list.

A project of The Museo ng Kaalamang Katutubo (MusKKat)  a book entitled “A Delicate Balance: Batanes Food, Ecology and Community” explores how food, ecology, nature, and tradition, have shaped the Ivatan way of life in the last 4,000 years.  It also explains too that the Ivatan and the Itbayat, people of the Batanes, knew well how to husband resources through aeons, without depleting or otherwise compromising nature.

The book was ritten by Corazon S. Alvina and Marian Pastor Roces and complemented with insightful photographs by Neal Oshima, the book shows the intricate but robust relationships within the Ivatan communities and how traditional Ivatan and Itbayat food is interconnected with the islands’ microsystems.

Officially launched this November, the book is a result of the collaboration with, and the consolidation of the substantive research work of, archaeologists, anthropologists, boat makers, botanists, Ivatan experts and cooks, a professional urban chef, nutritionists, geologists, sea current specialists, and zoologists.  “A Delicate Balance: Batanes Food, Ecology and Community” is available for purchase and priced at P3,850 via www.phfoodecosystems.com.

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