WALANG GURI: Gem Suguitan

Google Doodle Celebrates A Quezonin

Mar 9, 2023, 3:03 AM
Gem Suguitan

Gem Suguitan


Known for writing the first modern Philippine short story in English entitled “Dead Stars” in the year 1925, Paz Marquez-Benitez was a writer, editor, and teacher. She had her 129th birth anniversary and Google Doodle didn’t fail to remind the Philippines.

She was born on March 3, 1894 in Lucena, Tayabas, to Gregorio Marquez and Maria Jurado. She had her secondary education at Tayabas High School (now Quezon National High School). She was studying at the Philippine Normal University when she discovered her love for writing, and became one of the pioneer graduates of the University of the Philippines College of Liberal Arts.

Marquez-Benitez, Manila Carnival Queen of 1912, was an advocate of Philippine independence and heritage, and critical of American imperialism. She worked at UP and mentored many writers that also became luminaries in Philippine literature. She had been editor of Philippine Educational Magazine and the first women’s magazine in the country, Women’s Home Journal. She was one of the founders of Philippine Women’s College (now university), PWU.

Year 1914, she married Francisco Benitez, dean of the University of the Philippines. They had four children. Paz died at the age of 89 on November 10, 1983.

It is an honor for the women in the Philippines, not just in Quezon, for Paz Marquez-Benitez to be featured on her birthday.

March is also the time of the year when women are celebrated. Having a glimpse of her life also gives an impression of how Filipino achievers were during her time. Filipinas even from a long time ago valued education, they were leaders, and they had a voice.

Google Philippines did a good job in reminding internet users about a great Quezonin woman whose life and works inspire even the youth of today.

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