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Memories from EL GALEON DE MANILA (Part 2) --Filipinos in late 19th Century Breaking with European History & Language

By       Message Kevin Anthony Stoda     Permalink
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PINOYS BUT STILL FILIPINOS

            "The Philippines" was a name given by outsiders to the various peoples of over 7000 islands in southeast Asia in the 16th Century.   The name comes from the Spanish king of that era:   Philip II.    This European name, "Las Islas Filipinas", reflected the fact that a new era had begun for the people under Hispanic or Spanish rule.   I say "Hispanic" because "Las Islas Filipinas" were often ruled from Latin America.

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From the 16th century till the early 19th century, the Philippine islands were under the Viceroy of Nuevo Espana (New Spain).   However, as of 1810, the peoples of New Spain had called for independence from Spanish rule.

Throughout most of the 20th century, one of the national languages of the Philippines was Tagalog.   However, now the national language is simply called Filipino--and Tagalog is considered a subset of this greater language corpus.

Like the Tagalog language, i.e. which never has been spoken (nor fully accepted) in every corner of the Philippines--many of the new names for the Philippines in the 1890s never really caught on.   For example, Katagalugan, a name supported by Bonifacio's adherents,     was always seen as a Luzon-dominated term or Tagalog-name and thus only applicable to a portion of the Philippines. In other words, Katagalugan never caught on well among Visayan and Mindanao communities.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tagalog_Republic

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            In contrast, in 1820, the seat of colonial rule from Nuevo Espana (which had controlled Manila and Cebu for   2 - centuries) had become a country of its own:   Mexico.   By that time, the administration for the Philippines had reverted to Madrid.   

However, some 76 years later, when the Filipino revolutionaries declared independence from Spain, the Philippines-name did not follow suit.   It never left the country.

The revolutionaries and subsequent generations were unable to create a completely new national identity to mark the dawning of a new age.   The peoples who live there today are still known as Filipinos--the same name as the Spanish conquistadores had provided them 4 - centuries ago.

The peoples from this massive archipelago in Southeast Asia have continued to see themselves as Filipinos--or Pinoys for short.   "The word [Pinoy]   is formed by taking the last four letters of Filipino and adding the diminutive suffix -y in the Tagalog language (the suffix is commonly used in Filipino nicknames: "Ninoy' or "Noynoy' for Benigno, "Totoy' for Augusto, etc.)."

In a way, though, a distinct Filipino identity from the Spanish term Filipino has been carved out by the expanded practice of Filipinos referring to one-another as "Pinoys".   This is because usage of the suffix "oy" or "y" in "Pinoy" conveys somewhat the concept of diminutive or some sort of "smallness" or endearment, as when in English we add the "y" to John to create "Johnny" or the way that Robert becomes "Bobby".    Further, this usage of a diminutive is reminiscent of the child-like role discussed earlier for Filipino revolutionaries under the concept of bayan or bayani within Filipino ideals of community (and helpfulness to the community).

"Incidentally,   Pinoy was used for self-identification by the first wave of Filipinos going to the continental United States before World War II and has been used both in a pejorative sense as well as a term of endearment similar to Chicano."

NOTES

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[1] Veneracion, Jaime B. "Ang Bayan Ko;   Algunas Reflexiones sobre la Identidad

Nacional Filipina", EL GALEON DE MANILA , Mexico City:

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http://eslkevin.wordpress.com/2009/07/09/3-big-paradigms-hol

KEVIN STODA-has been blessed to have either traveled in or worked in nearly 100 countries on five continents over the past two and a half decades.--He sees himself as a peace educator and have been-- a promoter of good economic and social development--making-him an enemy of my homelands humongous DEFENSE SPENDING and its focus on using weapons to try and solve global (more...)
 

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