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lingering in the core of her becoming-Filipina. When Maya revisits

the scenario of her shame through her contact with another body,

one that reverberates with the untainted body of her youth, her

affective experience of shame is restructured. Shame, as is hinted

by Deleuze and expounded by Elspeth Probyn, consists of a

mind-body split, with the mind watching in alertness what the

body is going through, the former therefore experiences not only

the affects of the body, but the critical judgment when it hovers

above the body.


In Deleuze’s original observation, this mind-body

split is characteristic of a victim of abuse, rape or torture. By

annexing the body of the woman of shame to another woman,

Rosca manages to realign the structure of shame, rendering shame

a transmitted affect between different social bodies. In her original

transformation to become the Virgin Mary, Maya’s body

experiences feelings of shame, while her mind hovers overhead,

judging her shame, moving her to become violent. In her proximity

with Mayang, however, Mayang takes over the role of the mind

and the voyeur, supervising, criticizing, and judging Maya, who is

now nothing but the feelings of shame which are so disgusting that

her memories cannot bear to contain them: “Her memories vomit

her shame.” Yet Mayang is not only the witness, she is also affected,

therefore her judgment has an additional power of empathy.

Indeed one can argue that young Mayang is placed in the position

of performing the role of the Babaylan priestess, who helps purge

the feeling of shame by providing an outlet, becoming a secret

sharer of the unarticulated and unspeakable feelings of shame.




With regard to the mind-body structure of the affect of shame, Deleuze

observes: “The mind begins by coldly and curiously regarding what the body

does, it is first of all a witness; then it is affected, it becomes an impassioned

witness, that is, it experiences for itself affects that are not simply effects of

the body, but veritable critical


that hover over the body and judging

it” (as cited in Probyn, 2010: 80).


According to Leny Mendoza Strobel: “The Babaylan in Filipino indigenous

tradition is a person who is gifted to heal the spirit and the body; the one

who serves the community through her role as a folk therapist,