I. Pre-Colonial Period
- Consisted of early Filipino literature passed down orally; oral pieces have a communal authorship – it was difficult to trace the original author of the piece since
oral literature did not focus on ownership or copyright, rather on the act of storytelling itself;
- Many oral pieces became lost in the wave of the new literary influence brought about by the Spanish colonization; however, according to the Philippine
Literature: A History & Anthology, English Edition (Lumbera, B. & Lumbera C.), the pre-colonial period of Philippine literature is considered the longest in the
- Literature in this period is based on tradition, reflecting daily life activities such as housework, farming, fishing, hunting, and taking care of the children as
- Oral pieces told stories which explained heroes and their adventures; they attempted to explain certain natural phenomena, and, at the same time, served as
- Pre-colonial literature showed certain elements that linked the Filipino culture to other Southeast Asian countries (e.g. oral pieces which were performed
through a tribal dance have certain similarities to the Malay dance);
- This period in Philippine literature history represented the ethos of the people before the arrival of a huge cultural influence – literature as a cultural tradition,
than a form of art that had a particular set of decorum.
· Early Forms of Philippine Literature:
o Bugtong (riddles; a bugtong contains a metaphor called,Talinghaga), Salawikain (proverb);
o Pre-colonial poetry – Tanaga (expresses a view or a value of the world), Ambahan (songs about childhood, human relationships, hospitality; sung by
the Mangyan), Duplo (verbal jousts/games), Bayok (thoughts about love), Balagtasan (performed on stage);
o Epic poetry – romantic heroes and heroines that are a reflection of the world as perceived by the early Filipinos.
· Notable Works of the Pre-colonial Period:
o Tuwaang, Lam-ang, Hinilawod, Bantugan
II. Spanish Colonial Period (Mid-16th – late 19th century)
- The Spanish culture, as reflected in the works of this literature period, showed a clash with the pre-colonial Filipino literature in the beginning. However, due to
the length of stay of the colonizers, the Spanish culture was eventually imbued in the Filipino literature of the period;
- Religion became an important theme that had influenced the early Filipino writings which had the presence of paganism – “Christian Folk-Tale”;
- In addition, the influence of religion, besides on the daily life of the natives, was lead by the friar/missionary/parish priest who were appointed by the Spanish
- Despite the goal of the Spanish government to turn the country into a full-fledged European colony, the Spanish influence ironically inspired a reformation
from the natives, which eventually turned into a revolution;
- Yet regardless of the conflicts that plagued the relationship between the Spaniards and the Filipinos, a sense of nationalism was formed among the oppressed,
and had caused them to rise up to a nationalistic cause;
- The essay genre was recognized amidst the scene of editorial protest – Jose Rizal and Plaridel (Marcelo H. Del Pilar) were among those who opt in using the
pen in voicing out the people‟s cry instead of the sword;
- Introduction of the roman alphabet that gradually replaced the „alibata‟;
- The Filipino literature of this period became the predecessor of many more literary works to come in the ages, wherein the theme of nationalism and freedom
of speech would be evident.
· Philippine Literature and Art during the Spanish Period:
o Pasyon and Sinakulo (religious dramas performed during the Holy Week);
o Narrative Poems – Awit; Corrido;
o Komedya – a theatrical performance which captured the ideal European lifestyle as portrayed by medieval characters
· Notable Works of the Spanish Period:
o Doctrina Christiana (1593) – the first book ever published in the Philippines; printed by the Dominican Press;
o May Bagyo Mat‟ May Rilim – according to literary historian, Bienvenido Lumbera, is the first printed literary work in Tagalog;
o Ang Mahal na Passion ni Jesu Christong P. Natin na Tola (1704) – eventually referred to as “Pasyon,” was written by Gaspar Aquino de Belen; an example
of Christian folk epic in which the passion of Jesus Christ was written in relation with the plight of the Filipino people who were oppressed by the colonizers, as well
as the values of a Filipino;
o Ninay (1885) – first Filipino novel written; Pedro Paterno;
o Florante at Laura – Francisco “Balagtas” Baltazar; though there are symbols and themes which dictate the protest of the Filipino against the Spanish
regime, it is uncertain as to whether or not Balagtas had intended the issue – which was subtly derived from his work – since he left no notes or additional pieces that
may affirm the conclusion;
o Noli Me Tangere (1887) and El Filibusterismo (1891) – Jose Rizal; works which created an impact on the national consciousness and love for one‟s
country against the abusive government of the Spaniards;
o La Solidaridad – Propagandist newspaper.
III. American Colonial Period (Late 19th – Mid-20th century)
- The gradual decline of the Philippine literature written in Spanish;
- The English language eventually became the medium of writing and instruction in schools;
- As the Spanish colonizers left the country in accordance with the Treaty of Paris, the spirit of nationalism and the desire to be acknowledged of independence
did not disappear just yet. Instead, these uniting forces geared into revolting against the new colonizers;
- During the American colonization period, Philippine literature reflected the ethos of its people under a new role. However, these day-to-day experiences under
a new foreign influence, as well as sentiments, were expressed through the English language;
- The Spanish „sarsuwela‟ was eventually replaced by the „drama‟;
- One major influence of the American occupation on the Filipino literature is its refining in the context of the content and the form. Furthermore, because of this
broadened knowledge on the field of literature through the education provided by the American government, Philippine literature has become more than a tradition
formed by culture. It has become an art which succeeding poets, fictionists, and playwrights continue to build upon and enrich in every generation;
- Beginning with Rizal‟s use of social realism as one of the major themes for his two major novels, the literature during the American colonization also became
an involvement, not just reflecting the Filipino experience – a strengthened sense of nationalism deeply rooted in the Filipino pride and culture;
- Unlike in the Spanish colonization period wherein female writers (e.g. Gregoria de Jesus) were overshadowed by their more dominant, male contemporaries –
as a result of the education only being provided to a selected and privileged few – during the American occupation, women have had their opportunity to enhance
their talent by being educated on the craft. In addition, the growing popularity of works written by Filipina writers is the result of the growing audience appreciating
literature by females.
· Philippine Literature and Art during the American Period:
o Short Story
o Poetry in English
o Free Verse in Poetry
· Notable Works of the American Period:
o Mga Agos sa Disyerto (1964) – Efren R. Abueg, Edgardo M. Reyes, Eduardo Bautista Reyes, Rogelio L. Ordoñez and Rogelio R. Sikat; this short story
anthology brought fiction into the age of modernism;
o Ako ang Daigdig (1940) – Alejandro G. Abadilla; free verse poem;
o Sa Dakong Silangan – Jose Corazon de Jesus; a poem written in the vernacular
Philippine literature in English
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Philippine literature in English has its roots in the efforts of the United States, then engaged in a war with
Filipino nationalist forces at the end of the 19th century. By 1901, public education was institutionalized in
the Philippines, with English serving as the medium of instruction. That year, around 600 educators in the S.S.
Thomas (the "Thomasites") to replace the soldiers who had been serving as the first teachers. Outside the
academe, the wide availability of reading materials, such as books and newspapers in English,
helped Filipinos assimilate the language quickly. Today, 78.53% of the population can understand or speak
English (see List of countries by English-speaking population).
1 The Commonwealth Period
2 The Post-war period
3 Literary awards and competitions
4 Contemporary Writers
5 See also
7 External links
The Commonwealth Period
The founding of Silliman University by Presbyterian missionaries and the Philippine Normal School (PNS) in
1901 and the University of the Philippines (U.P.) in 1908, as well as of English newspapers like the Daily
Bulletin 1900, The Cablenews 1902, and the Philippines Free Press 1905, helped boost English usage. The
first ten years of the century witnessed the first verse and prose efforts of Filipinos in student publications such
as The Filipino Students’ Magazine first issue, 1905, a short-lived quarterly published in Berkeley, California, by
Filipino pensionados (or government scholars); the U.P. College Folio (first issue, 1910); The Coconut of the
Manila High School (first issue, 1912); and The Torch of the PNS (first issue, 1913).
However, the beginnings of anything resembling a professional market for writing in English would not be
realized until the 1920s with the founding of other newspapers and magazines like thePhilippines Herald in
1920, the Philippine Education Magazine in 1924 (renamed Philippine Magazine in 1928), and later the Manila
Tribune, the Graphic, Woman’s Outlook, and Woman’s Home Journal. The publications helped introduce the
reading public to the works of Paz Marquez Benitez, (Jose Garcia Villa), Loreto Paras, and Casiano Calalang,
among others. Cash incentives were given to writers in 1921 when the Free Press started to pay for published
contributions and awarded P1,000 for the best stories. The organization in 1925 of the Philippine Writers
Association and in 1927 of the University of the Philippines National Writers Workshop, which put out
the Literary Apprentice, also helped encourage literary production. In 1939, the Philippine Writers League was
put up by politically conscious writers, intensifying their debate with those in the "art for art’s sake" school of
Among the significant publications of this fertile period were:
Filipino Poetry (1924) by Rodolfo Dato;
English-German Anthology of Filipino Poets (1934) by Pablo Laslo;
Jose Garcia Villa’s Many Voices (1939) and Poems of Doveglion (1941);
Poems (1940) by Angela Manalang-Gloria;
Chorus for America: Six Philippine Poets (1942) by Carlos Bulosan;
Zoilo Galang’s A Child of Sorrow (1921), the first Filipino novel in English, and Box of Ashes and Other
Stories (1925), the first collection of stories in book form;
Villa’s Footnote to Youth: Tales of the Philippines and Others (1933);
"The Wound and the Scar" (1937) by Arturo Rotor, a collection of stories;
"Winds of April" (1940) by N. V. M. Gonzalez;
"His Native Soil" (1941) by Juan C. Laya;
Manuel Arguilla’s "How My Brother Leon Brought Home a Wife and Other Stories" (1941);
Galang’s "Life and Success" (1921), the first volume of essays in English; and
the influential "Literature and Society" (1940) by Salvador P. López.
Dramatic writing took a backseat due to the popularity of Filipino vaudeville (bodabil) and Tagalog movies,
although it was kept alive by the playwright Wilfredo Ma. Guerrero.
The Post-war period
During the Japanese occupation, when Tagalog was favored by the Japanese military authority, writing in
English was consigned to limbo, since most of the English writers are forced to write in Tagalog or joined in the
underground and write English stories based on the battles to serve as propaganda pieces in boosting the
morale of the guerrillas. It picked up after the war, however, with a fervor and drive for excellence that continue
to this day. Stevan Javellana’s "Without Seeing the Dawn" (1947), the first postwar novel in English, was
published in the United States. In 1946, the Barangay Writers Project was founded to help publish books in
Against a background marked by political unrest and government battles with Hukbalahap guerrillas, writers in
English in the postwar period honed their sense of craft and techniques. Among the writers who came into their
own during this time were, among many others:
Francis James De mesa
Carl Joseph Cruz
Linda Ty Casper
jansen allen abanes
N. V. M. Gonzalez
Sinai C. Hamada
F. Sionil José
Vicente Rivera Jr.
Alejandro R. Roces
Abelardo and Tarrosa Subido
Edilberto K. Tiempo
Kerima Polotan Tuvera
Manuel A. Viray
Oscar de Zuñiga
Template:Phillip bartolata sr.
Fresh from studies in American universities, usually as Fulbright or Rockefeller scholars, a number of these
writers introduced New Criticism to the country and applied its tenets in literature classes and writing
workshops. In this way were born the Silliman National Writers Workshop.
Literary awards and competitions
In 1940, the first Commonwealth Literary Awards were given by President Manuel L. Quezon to Salvador P.
Lopez for "Literature and Society" (essay), Manuel Arguilla for "How My Brother Leon Brought Home a Wife
and Other Stories" (short story), R. Zulueta da Costa for "Like the Molave" (poetry), and Juan C. Laya for "His
Native Soil" (novel).
Government recognition of literary merit came in the form of the Republic Cultural Heritage Awards (1960), the
Pro Patria Awards for Literature (1961), and the National Artist Awards (1973). Only the last of these three
awards survives today. Writers in English who have received the National Artist award include: Jose Garcia
Villa (1973), Nick Joaquin (1976), Carlos P. Romulo (1982),Francisco Arcellana (1990), N. V. M. Gonzalez,
Rolando Tinio (1997), Edith L. Tiempo, (2000), F. Sionil José (2003), and Bienvenido Lumbera (2006).
A select group of local writers have also received the international Magsaysay Award, namely, F. Sionil
José, Nick Joaquin and Bienvenido Lumbera.
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Despite the lack of a professional writer's market, poetry and fiction in English continue to thrive and be written
with sophistication and insight. Among the fictionists of recent years are:
Dean Francis Alfar
Cecilia Manguerra Brainard
Linda Ty Casper
Jose Dalisay, Jr.
Vicente Garcia Groyon
Amadis Ma. Guerrero
F. Sionil José
Luis Joaquin Katigbak
Ma. Francezca Kwe
Angelo Rodriguez Lacuesta
Jaime An Lim
Rosario Cruz Lucero
Menchu Aquino Sarmiento
Alfred A. Yuson
José Wendell Capili
Ricardo de Ungria
Lourd Ernest De Veyra
Ophelia Alcantara Dimalanta
Simeon Dumdum, Jr.
Federico Licsi Espino Jr.
J. Neil C. Garcia
Ramil Digal Gulle
Ma. Luisa Igloria
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Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (October 2013)
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Part of a series on the
Culture of the Philippines
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the Philippines portal
Life in the Philippines
Map of usage of Filipino languages
Philippine literature is the literature associated with the Philippines and includes the legends of prehistory,
and the colonial legacy of the Philippines. Most of the notable literature of the Philippines was written during the
Spanish period and the first half of the 20th century in Spanish language. Philippine literature is written
in Spanish, English, Tagalog, or other native Philippine languages.
1 Early works
2 Classical literature in Spanish during the 19th Century
o 2.1 Poetry and metrical romances
o 2.2 Prose
o 2.3 Dramas
o 2.4 Religious drama
o 2.5 Secular dramas
3 Modern literature (20th and 21st century)
4 Notable Philippine literary authors
5 See also
7 External links
Doctrina Christiana, Manila, 1593, is the first book printed in the Philippines.
Tomas Pinpin wrote and printed in 1610 Librong Pagaaralan nang mga Tagalog nang Uicang Castilla, 119
pages designed to help fellow Filipinos to learn the Spanish language in a simple way. He is also with the
first news publication made in the Philippines, "Successos Felices".
Classical literature in Spanish during the 19th Century
Main article: Philippine literature in Spanish
On December 1, 1846, the first daily newspaper, La Esperanza, was published in the country. Other early
newspapers were La Estrella (1847), Diario de Manila (1848) and Boletin Oficial de Filipinas (1852). The first
provincial newspaper was El Eco de Vigan (1884), which was issued in Ilocos. In Cebu City "El Boletín de
Cebú" (The Bulletin of Cebu), was published in 1890.
On 1863, the Spanish government introduced a system of free public education that increased the population's
ability to read Spanish and thereby furthered the rise of an educated class called the Ilustrado (meaning, well-
informed). Spanish became the social language of urban places and the true lingua franca of the archipelago.
A good number of Spanish newspapers were published until the end of the 1940s, the most influential of them
being El Renacimiento, printed in Manila by members of the Guerrero de Ermita family.
Some members of the ilustrado group, while in Spain, decided to start a Spanish publication with the aim of
promoting the autonomy and independence projects. Members of this group included Pedro Alejandro Paterno,
who wrote the novel Nínay (first novel written by a Filipino) ((cn)) and the Philippine national hero, José Rizal,
who wrote excellent poetry and two famous novels in Spanish: Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not), and El
Especially potent was La Solidaridad, more fondly called La Sol by the members of the propaganda movement,
founded in 15 February 1885.
With the help of this paper, Filipino national heroes like José
Rizal, Graciano Lopez Jaena, and Marcelo H. del Pilar were able to voice out their sentiments.
Poetry and metrical romances
Ladino Poems – Were natives of first Tagalog versifiers who saw print: highly literate in both Spanish and
Corridos – Were widely read during the Spanish period that filled the populace's need for entertainment
as well as edifying reading matter in their leisure moments.
Awit – like corridos, these were also widely read during the Spanish period as entertaining, edifying,
reading manner in their leisure time. It is also a fabrication of the writers imagination although the
characters and the setting may be European. The structure is rendered dodecasyllabic quatrains.
requires expansion. (August 2013)
The prose works of the Spanish Period consisted mostly of didactic pieces and translations of religious writings
in foreign languages.
This section is empty. You can
help by adding to it. (August
The Panunuluyan– Literally, seeking entrance, the Tagalog version of the Mexican Las Posadas. Held on
the eve of Christmas, it dramatizesJoseph's and Mary's search for Bethlehem.
Cenaculo – Was the dramatization of the passion and death of Jesus Christ.
Salubong – An Easter play that dramatizes the meeting of the Risen Christ and His Mother.
Moriones – Refers to the participants dressed roman soldiers, their identities hidden behind colorful,
sometimes grotesque, wooden masks.
The Santacruzan – Performed during the month of May which have the devotion for the Holy Cross. It
depicts St. Elena's search for the cross on which Christ died.
Pangangaluwa – An interesting socio-religious practice on All Saint's Day which literally means for The
These were generally held during the nine nights of vigil and prayers after someone's death, on the first death
anniversary when the family members put away their mourning clothes.
The Karagatan – comes from the legendary practice of testing the mettle of young men vying for a
maiden's hand. The maiden's ring would be dropped into sea and whoever retrieves it would have the girl's
hand in marriage.
The Duplo – A forerunner of the balagtasan. The performances consist of two teams; One composed of
young women called Dupleras or Belyakas; and the other, of young men calledDupleros or Belyakos.
The Comedia – It is about a courtly love between, a prince and a princess of different religions. It is about
a Christian-Muslim relationship
Modern literature (20th and 21st century)
The greatest portion of Spanish literature was written during the American period, most often as an expression
of pro-Hispanic nationalism, by those who had been educated in Spanish or had lived in the Spanish-speaking
society of the big cities, and whose principles entered in conflict with the American cultural trends.[citation
Such period of Spanish literary production—i.e., between the independence of Spain in 1898 and well
ahead into the decade of the 1940s—is known as Edad de Oro del Castellano en Filipinas. Some prominent
writers of this era wereWenceslao Retana and Claro Mayo Recto, both in drama and essay; Antonio M.
Abad and Guillermo Gomez Wyndham, in the narrative; Fernando María Guerrero and Manuel Bernabé, both
in poetry. The predominant literary style was the so-called "Modernismo", a mixture of elements from the
French Parnassien and Symboliste schools, as promoted by some Latin American and Peninsular Spanish
writers (e.g. the Nicaraguan Rubén Darío, the Mexican Amado Nervo, the Spaniard Francisco Villaespesa, and
the Peruvian José Santos Chocano as major models).
Notable Philippine literary authors
Cecilia Manguerra Brainard
Linda Ty Casper
N. V. M. Gonzalez
F. Sionil José
Ambeth R. Ocampo
Alejandro R. Roces
Edilberto K. Tiempo
Kerima Polotan Tuvera
ls: Course Outline, Syllabus
Course Outline / Syllabus
Course Number :Engl_5
Title : Philippine Literature
Department / Program ; BSCS / BSSA / CT /Comp. Prog .
Semester and School Year : 2nd Semester , 2007 – 2008
Instructor : ____________________
This course treats mainly on the development of Philippine Literature from the Early Period to the Modern
Period . The course attempts to bring together within the covers of single instructional material the best that has
been said and taught in Philippine Literature . It also provides varied and meaningful learning experiences that
make the teaching and learning experiences more relevant , more meaningful and value oriented . Selected
literary pieces written by great Filipino writers are studied in this subject.
Course Objectives ( Desirable Objectives )
At the end of the course , students should be able to :
1. Foster appreciation and love for literature .
2. Develop and strengthen worthwhile values through reading literary masterpieces .
Course Methodology / Strategies
2. Group Dynamics
3. Individual Reporting
4. Role Playing
Course Outline and Timeframe
_ A. Literature
_ B. Criteria of a Good Literature
_ C. Types of Literature
_ D. Four Literary Genres
_ E. Approaches to Literature
II. The Early Period (1900-1930)
_ A. Footnote to Youth – Jose Garcia Dead Stars – Paz Marquez Benitez
_ B. Where’s My May? – Fernando Ma. Guerrero
_ C. Sonnet I – Jane Garcia
_ D. What’s An Educated Filipino – Francisco Benitez
_ E. To A Last One – Angela Manalang Gloria
III. The Middle Period (1930-1960)
_ A. The Wedding Dance – Amador T. Daguio
_ B. How My Brother Leon Brought Home A Wife – Manuel Arguilla -
_ C. Three Generations – Nick Joaquin
_ D. Like the Molave – R. Zulueta da Costa
_ E. Sonia – Francisco Icasiano
_ F. Dirge – Vidal A. Tan
IV. The Modern Period (1960-1975)
_ A. The House on Zapote Street – Nick Joaquin (Quijano de Manila)
_ B. The Visitation of the Gods – Gilda Cordero
_ C. The Filipino Woman – Carmen Guerrero Napkil
_ D. Change– G. Burce Bunao
V. Oral Lore From Precolonial Times ( - 1564 )
_ A. Introduction
_ _ 1. Riddles -
_ _ 2. Proverbs ( Tagalog
_ _ 3. Short Poems ( Tagalog )
_ _ 4. - - Ambalan ( Mangyan ,
_ _ 5. Songs
_ _ 6. Folk Epic
VI. Literature Under Spanish Colonialism (1565 – 1897)
VII. Literature Under U. S. Colonialism (1898 – 1945)
VIII. Literature Under The Republic (1946 – 1985)
IX .Literature After EDSA (1986 – 1945)
Groghan , Richard SJ . The Development of Philippine Literature in English . Phoenix Publishing House Inc .
Quezon City , 1975 .
Lumbera , Bienvenido and Lumbera Cynthia Nograles . Philippine Literature . Revised Edition . A History and
Anthology . Anvil Publishing Inc ., 2000.
2. Other Philippine Literature Books / Modules
1.Class Attendance and Class Participation
2.Activities and Exercises
3. Major Examination
7. Research Paper / Reaction Paper
8. Tree Planting
9. Interpretation and analyses of the different literary types .
10. Comparison and contrast of the various types of literature .
11. Critical Analysis of masterpiece