Papers of the Underground Movement During the Marcos Regime (Philippine Radical Papers of the Marcos Regime)

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This collection from the underground movement during the Marcos Regime consists of over 16,000 scanned pages from 250 newsletters, newspapers, journals, letters, and other ephemera written in the Philippines and the United States. The contents of this collection are made publicly available for purposes of research, education, and private study. For access to the restricted materials, please fill out the Philippine Studies Collection Research Registration Form and e-mail to Please write "Philippine Radical Papers" in the subject line of your email.

The Martial Law in the Philippines, declared by then-President Ferdinand Marcos on September 21, 1972, marked a significant period in the country’s history. It was characterized by the suspension of civil liberties, media censorship, and the concentration of power in the hands of the government. The regime justified martial law as a response to the social unrest and communist insurgency.

During this period, there were widespread human rights abuses, including arrests, torture, and disappearances of political opponents. The media faced strict censorship, limiting freedom of expression. Anyone caught with "subversive documents" that were critical of Marcos in the 1970s were in danger of being detained, imprisoned or murdered. The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa became one of the secret repositories for these materials which includes newspapers, leaflets, speeches, poems, and songs, which became the Philippine Radical Papers of the Ferdinand Marcos Regime. This collection consists of 13 linear feet of archival materials of the writings of the political underground during the Marcos Regime. A digital index can be found on the following website,

Martial Law remained in effect until 1981, shaping the political landscape and leaving a lasting impact on Philippine Society. The restoration of democracy in 1986, marked by the People Power Revolution, ended the era of martial law and paved the way for a new chapter in the country’s history.

Fifty years later, the Philippine Radical Papers are fading and have become brittle. The University of Hawai‘i Hamilton Library’s Philippine Collection began this collection’s digitization project in 2023 in order to preserve and provide access to these important documents for future generations of scholars.

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Suggested Citation (APA): University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Philippine Collection. (2023). Papers of the underground movement during the Marcos regime (Philippine radical papers of the Marcos regime). Philippine Studies Digital Collection.

Thank you to the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa Center for Philippine Studies, Hamilton Library and our anonymous donors. Without you, this project would not have been possible.


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