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The Center for Southeast Asian Studies > Ub-ufok Ad Fiallig Overview > Teaching Modules > Module 8. Tabfiad: Diaspora and Sense of Place

Module 8. Tabfiad: Diaspora and Sense of Place

Video coming soon……


Tabiad, derived from the narrative of Arfonso Nacleo


This story is about the Tabfiad, a gigantic snake with legs, that terrorized Fiallig.


The story of the Ifiallig people fleeing from the Tabfiad is reminiscent of the out migration of many Filipinos in the Philippines. As of 2011, over 2 million sought work overseas because of high unemployment rates.  Millions more have left for good, now calling countries such as the United States “home away from home.” These Filipinos make up the Philippine Diaspora. The term “Diaspora” originally referred to the Jewish people who were forced to leave their ancestral land because of war while Filipinos left for economic reasons, vestiges of colonial rule by both the Spanish and Americans, and government repression particularly during the Marcos Regime.


Diaspora – the dispersion of people from their homeland.

Human Migration – the movement of people from one place to another.



1. Students discuss the story.

Guiding Questions:

1. Why did the Ifiallig people leave Fiallig?

2. Describe the Tabfiad?

3. How was the Tabfiad killed?

4. Why didn’t the Ifiallig stay even after the Tabfiad was killed?

5. How did the Ifiallig mark their ancestral home before they left?

6. Where is the blackened stone remains of the Tabfiad?

Critical Thinking

Have students discuss what diaspora means.

How does diaspora relate to the story of the Ifiallig who were fleeing from the Tabfiad?

Have students read the following blog on Filipino diaspora as they reflect on their own family histories. Are they a product of diaspora? If not, do they know anyone who came to the United States through that method? Why do they think of people leave their ancestral home?

Filipino Diaspora1 - Module 8. Tabfiad: Diaspora and Sense of Place

Filipino Diaspora2 - Module 8. Tabfiad: Diaspora and Sense of Place

Source: Letanna, Edd. Retrieved from on May 11, 2018.

Culminating Activity

Students put themselves in the shoes of immigrants. How does it feel to leave ones homeland? How does it feel to move to a new country? What are the fears that they face? How do you think the people in their adoptive place treat them? As they reflect on these questions, as a project, have them interview an immigrant. Ask them the same questions. Do they have any regrets? Have they faced racism and xenophobia (fear of foreigners). What are their hopes for the future. Have students share their projects in class.