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The Carabao and the Shell

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The Carabao and the Shell

A TINGUIAN FOLKTALE

This story hails from the Tinguian or the Itneg, whose traditional textiles often show the Tineg River, a tributary that leads to the long Abra River system. Versions of this story may be known elsewhere in the world as the Tortoise and the Hare. 

A CULTURAL KEEPSAKE

Download the story or preorder the riso zine to support our indigenous peoples.

One very hot day, a carabao went into the river to bathe. There he met a shell and they began to talk. “You are very slow,” said the carabao to the shell. “Oh, no,” replied the shell. “I can beat you in a race.” So they went out on the bank and started to run. The carabao ran and ran. Then he stopped and called out, “Shell!” Another shell lying by the river answered, “Here I am!” Then the carabao, thinking that it was the same shell, ran on. By and by, he stopped again and called out, “Shell!” Again, another shell answered, “Here I am!”

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The carabao was dumbfounded. How could the shell keep up with him?

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The carabao was dumbfounded. How could the shell keep up with him?

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He was determined to win, so he ran on and on. Every so often, he would call out to the shell and another shell would answer him. He kept on going and going, up until he was completely worn out from the race. All the while, the first and only shell who challenged him rested peacefully on the riverbanks.

 

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In honor of the indigenous Filipinos, Gunitaan partnered with PAGASA to help support Aeta, Lumad, T'boli, and communities in Buhi, Camarines Sur affected by supertyphoons. In exchange for donations of any amount of your choosing is a digital compilation of the library designed for mobile.

The library is also a risograph art zine in collaboration with Bad Student, for pre-order until Dec. 11, 2020. In light of the typhoon damage they sustained, 10% of the zine proceeds will go towards their recovery. The rest of the zine proceeds will also be donated to the indigenous communities supported by PAGASA.

 

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Gunitaan is a humble library of folktales that tell us who we are, who we have been for centuries, and what inspires us as a culture. Gunitaan seeks to use design to shed light on, honor and preserve the beauty inherent to the many cultures that keep our identity alive. 

By the humans of Serious Studio.