Revisiting the ‘Aquino Magic’: Extending Neoliberal Interests and Foreshadowing Communicative Capitalism in the Philippines

The media hype over former president Corazon Aquino’s burial, specifically the cinematic coverage of big network stations and the outpouring of voices on print and new media about “Cory Magic,” are conscious and purposive articulations of a historical event. This paper contends that in this event and its attendant images, participated in and co-created by the population, lies an implicit strategy that intensifies the neoliberal project.

The constant reference to and revival of the “Cory Magic/Aquino Magic” can be rationalized as a phenomenon wielded by the media and the state to do a makeover of its political institutions constantly racked by crisis and instability under a neoliberal setup. This is made possible through the operation of communicative capitalism as evidenced by how the media orchestrated the coverage of Cory Aquino’s burial, accentuating necropolitics in the name of democracy while effacing the symbolic efficacy of people’s power.