This volume of Langkit is intended to show the different researches that were
conducted in the different fields of social sciences and humanities specifically in linguistics, literature, language, and political science.
Calimbo’s article, entitled Deconstructing Myths via Humor: A Semiotic
Analysis of Philippine Political Internet Memes, for example, analyzes the role of political memes in exposing political ideological constructs which are naturalized or normalized in the Philippine society. Taking memes which focus on the “Daang Matuwid” (Straight Path) governance of the Aquino presidency as corpus of the study, and semiotics as tool for analysis, it claims that humor is basically aggressive and is effective in unmasking the dissatisfaction and resentment of the people towards the government. Semiotics, and its reading of signs within a system, is an effective analytical tool in reading the binary oppositions and contrasts of the “Daang Matuwid” concept with that of moral violations committed by the government. In a nutshell, the strength of the paper lies in its attempt to combine politics, ideology, popular culture and an emerging genre in media to convey a certain political message.
Quilab’s article entitled Libog Mo, Libog Ko: Ang Kalibugan at ang mga
Pagnanasa sa mga Akda ni Eros Atalia redefines and contextualizes the word “libog” which can mean “desire” in Tagalog, and “confusion” in Sebuano. Using the works of Eros Atalia, a Filipino contemporary writer as corpus of the study, and analyzing these from the psychoanalytic perspective, Quilab claims that although the first layer of meaning of the word is desire, as manifested in the erotic, sexual, and sensual scenes in Atalia’s work, it may also pertain to the political and social issues that are confronted by the characters which then lead to confusion. In the process, “libog” takes both meanings of desire and confusion. Quilab was able to draw out the subtlety and indirectness from the texts in order to capture the ambivalence of the meanings of the term. In the process, there is not only the merging of meanings, but of languages as well.
Pantaleta’s paper attempts to translate five poems by the Romantic poet John
Keats into Chabacano, a Spanish creole found in the Philippines and mostly spoken in the Zamboanga Peninsula. Pantaleta’s paper El Poesia Romantico: The Challenges of Translating John Keats to Chabacano probes into the process of translating English poetry into the creole and discusses three stages: Pre-Translation, During Translation, Post Translation. The researcher plunges into a discussion about form and meaning and how these fundamental variables are transformed, transferred, and distorted in the process of translation. Pantaleta discovers that the experimentation done in her study does not yield very successful results in terms of the transfer of meaning between two texts from different cultures. There are many roadblocks such as Keats’ literary lexicon constructing images that a translator such as Pantaleta cannot come to understand because she possesses only a limited understanding of the cultural idioms. This study, while probing into form to discuss the creation and transfer of meaning, opens up discussion about language revitalization of the mother tongues in the country.
Alejandrino’s paper is an attempt to put the Sebuano language and the Iligan
National Writer’s Workshop (INWW), the only writer’s workshop in Mindanao, and which aims to develop regional literatures of the country, in focus. The corpus of the paper are Sebuano poems found in the Poetry section of Volumes 1 to 20 (1994 to 2013) of the INNW proceedings. It is a preliminary study on the description of Sebuano figurative language and present emerging categories specifically available for Sebuano poetry’s figurative expressions which can be utilized to create a new material that focuses on figurative language expressed in Sebuano literature particularly in poetry. Using the Linguistic Deviation theory by Levin (1969) which enables to draw out the figurative expressions embedded in the poems, the study puts
forward new categories of figures of speech distinct to the Sebuano language allows the readers to imagine, observe, and feel experiences in new perspectives. Binti Alias’ paper looks into the language that is generated when people of the older generation interact with technology with reference to standard American English as used in Malaysia. The research looks into what happens to language when it is utilized through the medium of technology, especially text messaging by a specific group of people: those from the older demographic the researcher calls “senior generation.”
Binti Alias studies the difficulties the respondents encounter in language use and how they cope with these challenges in order to construct meaning they would like to convey. One of the mechanisms she discusses in her paper is the use of abbreviations. She also looks into the morphing of standardized language to fit into and goes through the communication channels we use today. The paper paints the nuances for language into the formal and informal registers and tries to find text messaging’s place in it.
The last paper by Enrique Batara is a descriptive analysis of two barangays’
risk reduction strategies against dengue, an infectious disease transmitted by
mosquitoes. These barangays, namely Barangay Kansungka and Barangay Gacat, Baybay, located in Leyte, an island in the Visayas region, have high incidences of dengue and therefore needs to be studied and analyzed. The paper primarily aims to 1) determine the informants’ access and exposure to information on dengue, 2) to ascertain informants’ understanding of dengue, 3) to find out the strategies the informants currently use to reduce risks of dengue, and 4) to determine the informants’ risk reduction strategies for dengue based on seasonal climate forecasts. Using focus group discussion as methodology for data gathering, the paper’s contribution to the growing literatures on strategies on disease outbreaks and risk reduction management is the necessity and significance of the recognition of the relationship between climate such as rainfall patterns and dengue outbreak. The local officials must be equipped with this ability.
The six articles in this volume speak of the richness of the scholarly endeavors and the vibrancy of the fields of the social sciences and how they yield different perspectives on how we look at concepts and ideas that are usually assumed to be given but actually reveal the complexity of the society where we thrive and live in.
Nelia G. Balgoa, DHS
With this issue, we address four research areas in the social sciences: language teaching, linguistics, folklore, and migration. Using qualitative and quantitative designs, the papers articulate the issues confronting teachers, students, and migrants. The research sites include cities in the Philippines and Japan. As the research landscapes become multidisciplinary, the six papers discuss the apparent connection between teachers as instructors and teachers as researchers. Teaching is enhanced by research, and research provides teachers new perspectives to students’ learning. Corollary to this is the challenge of empirical data to link the micro level analysis to the macro realities as a system of discourse of both students in the academe and migrant Filipinos in other countries. This issue endeavors to reinvigorate the academic terrain of conducting research with the ebb and flow of educational philosophies and methodologies, extending its scope to identity construction and folk practices.
Teaching students with autism can be daunting when they are mixed with other students who are different from them. But in a learning environment where this concern is not adequately addressed in terms of support mechanism, the teacher has to devise means to make the students feel that they are part of the class. The paper on “The Hushed Voices of Autism: Chronicling Social and Academic Experiences in College” by Judith S. Cagaanan looks into the lived experiences of students with autism (SWA) at MSU-Iligan Institute of Technology. She explores the academic performance of the students and their social experiences using semi-structured interview. The phenomenological analysis of the data reveals that the will to succeed in their academics is hampered by everyday personal tussles. Various themes are identified and support system on their social and emotional needs are recommended.
A more focused quantitative study on anxiety among students at Western Mindanao State University (WMSU), a state university in Zamboanga City was investigated by the late Mario Mark B. Selisana, a PhD Language Studies student. His study seeks to correlate State-Trait Anxiety with linguistic competence of ninety (90) sophomore students. Using a standardized State-trait Anxiety Inventory (Speilberger 1991) and the Linguistic Competence Test on grammar and vocabulary (Salian, 2012), there is a significant relationship between anxiety and linguistic competence, but gender and course do not influence state-trait anxiety and linguistic competence. In addition, their language competence test on grammar and vocabulary is classified as “very good user”, suggesting more exposure to critical skills that involve evaluation of textual structure and lexical items. In this study, female and male students equally perform in the linguistic competence task.
Higher Education Institution (HEI) English teachers recognize the shift from grammatical versus functional syllabuses and cognitive versus experiential learning styles. However, it has been observed that assessing language proficiency remains grammar-based. The paper, “Assessment of Students’ English Oral Proficiency Based on Degree Programs: Implications for University Admissions Examinations” by Helen R. Betonio employs a modified oral proficiency test from the Texas Oral Proficiency Test (TOPT). To measure the respondents’ oral proficiency on functions, content, vocabulary, grammar, comprehensibility, and fluency, a one-way ANOVA test of Equality of means is used, followed by Post Hoc Analysis in relation to degree programs. The results show a significance level of 0.05 in all areas. This study has implications to the MSU-System Student Admission and Scholarship Examination (SASE) that has a Language Usage (LU) component. In some faculties of the Institute, students’ SASE scores in LU are used as bases in program admissions. Thus, test designers of SASE may revisit the test items of LU and reexamine them whether they objectively represent the language needs of the examinees.
The implementation of K+12 Basic Education in the country has initiated drastic reforms in the various curricula in the HEIs. With the Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education (MTBLE) framework, indigenous languages are revitalized. The paper “Varyasyong Leksikal Ng Mga Wikaing Bagobo-Tagabawa, Giangan at Obo-Manobo ng Lungsod Davao: Pokus sa Dimensyong Heyograpikal” by Luden L. Baterina argues that the three languages in Davao possess lexical variations but carry the same meanings while one language does not share the lexical variations of two languages. From the emerging variations, it is observed that each language has its distinct way of using words related to their respective topographies.
This linguistic phenomenon within sociolinguistics falls within Labov’s concept of language change that is partly a result of language contact. Using Meyerhoff’s (2011) analytical method of free variation, the study contributes to the growing literature on indigenous languages in terms of lexical variations.
Philippine folkways are intricately woven in our everyday lives. They do not only define us; in fact, they symbolize the worlds of the unknown, simplified as manifestations of supernatural powers. “The Mananambals and Their Functions in Philippine Culture” by Lourd Greggory D. Crisol and Efren John J. Oledan, the paper explores folk healing among practitioners in Iligan City. Reminiscent of the anthropological tradition of Malinowski and folklore studies of Dorson, the findings reveal that folk healers or mananambals attribute their craft to supernatural powers while their ability to diagnose illnesses and diseases are guided by various spirits. Similar to shamanism, these healers perform incantations to cure the patients, massage affected body parts, and prescribe herbal medicine. They also use amulets and trinkets to protect themselves from harmful spirits. Despite scientific advances in medical science, this study reifies the Filipinos’ sense of community where the folk healers, at least in Iligan City, still occupy a role and spirituality that remains grounded on folk healing, beliefs, and practices.
The economics of migration in Philippine context has resulted in brain drain, but Filipinos’ concept of nation in foreign lands keep them connected to the families, friends, and relatives they left behind. The paper “The Filipino migrants in Japan: Reconstructing Identity and Nation” by Nelia G. Balgoa interrogates the symbols and representations of Filipino identity through a Barrio Fiesta held in Yokohama, Japan. In depth interviews are used to document the migrants’ experiences while social semiotics provide the analytical tool. While the Filipinos during the fiesta index their identities through costumes and other semiotic resources of “Filipino-ness” in their fiesta kiosks, the study argues that identities are reconstructed and that the concept of nation is negotiated. As host country of the festival, Japan acts as a destabilizing entity, breathing its physical presence to Filipinos’ expressions of “home” or nation. Being a Filipino in Japan is a manifestation of multiple involvements that sometimes lead to negotiation rather than assimilation of Japanese identity or assertion of a stable Filipino identity.
The six articles in this issue reflect the dynamism of the College of Arts and Sciences of MSU-IIT’s attempt to foster a culture of research among its students and faculty members and the growing interdisciplinarity of research in the production and generation of knowledge.
For and in Behalf of the Editor,
Dr. Ivie C. Esteban
English Department, CASS, MSU-IIT
In times when meanings have become fluid and highly contextual because of cultural ambivalence, access to information and the multimodality of communication, the study of languages and its complexities have become very crucial in understanding the world and the societies we live in.
This issue of Langkit focuses on Language Studies and attempts to capture the nuances and fluidity of meanings by problematizing and interrogating the dynamics of language use and communication and in particular, drawing out the power relations informed by state policies and media outlets. In the process, the articles show that language does indeed reflect and shape social order. Taking different a turn from the traditional approaches of studying language, the articles forward an interdisciplinary approach, particularly ideological discourse where language reflect social dynamics and interaction. In this sense, the articles present a novel of way of looking at language studies.
McLellan’s article entitled Towards Dehegemonizing the English Language”: Perspectives of a ‘Centre’ Researcher Working in the ‘Periphery’ decentralizes the notion of standard English and recognizes writers from the periphery who “writes back” thereby dehegemonizing English as a global language. Another argument forwarded by McLellan is how theories of Applied Linguistics are misapplied in two areas: language policies and language learning and teaching. Nations from Southeast Asia such as Brunei, the Philippines and Malaysia have always struggled to develop appropriate language policies that will answer the needs of their diverse ethnolinguistic groups. Questions on whether to retain the colonial language or switch to national or official language have always been a contentious issue among language scholars and policy makers. Language policies such as the Mother Tongue Based Language education (MTBLE) and bilingual medium of education are attempts to “balance” the use of English and local languages and are always considered in the name of nationalism and national unity. McLellan argues that problems arise when we look to the monolingual and anglocentric ‘West’ for theories of Applied Linguistics and used these to analyze the language situation of the multilingual and multiethnic Southeast Asian nations. Language teaching and learning, on the other hand, centers on “the debate over the use or proscription of the teacher’s and students’ shared first language (L1) in the second-language (L2) classroom, especially where the L2 in question is English.” In this sense, there is a need to problematize code switching and translanguaging in language teaching and learning.
As a conclusion, McLellan’s article proposes a model wherein Applied Linguistics is expanded to include other fields of social sciences thereby making the discipline synchronic and multidimensional. Another area which McLellan opens is the paucity and scarcity of theorizing from Asian context and emphasizes the need for mainstreaming this kind of research and breaking the mode of commercializing knowledge.
Mollejon’s paper entitled Exploring Cross-Cultural Self-Disclosure of Women Facebook Users attempts to explore self-disclosure among women from two actively involved countries on Facebook, India and the Philippines. Using Altman and Taylor’s Social Penetration Theory and Hall’s Iceberg Model of Culture, the
article expounds how social networking sites such as Facebook changes the notion of self-disclosure by analyzing the breadth in terms of topics and subject matter and depth which pertains to degree of intimacy. Through content analysis, the article utilizes as corpus of the study posts from Indian and Filipino women and takes into consideration how the different modes of communication aside from language, such as visuals and other codes reconfigure the meaning of self-disclosure. The strength of the study is the assertion that just like face to face communication, self-disclosure in social network tends to be superficial because sharing of personal intimacy, based on the responses, seems to be unreciprocated. Reciprocity must also be evident for it to go beyond the surface. In this sense, self- disclosure remains to be culture-driven regardless of the medium.
The last two articles deal with how mass media such as newspapers frame issues like the Marawi siege and international tourism as shown in news headlines. Both articles prove how language can be a potent tool in representing and meaning making and in the process validates how powerful media can be in forming and influencing political ideologies.
The article The Language of Online News Headline: Discoursing the Marawi Crisis by Villa, Ybanez and Esteban analyzes the language use of 313 headlines which deal with the Marawi Siege crisis and its aftermath from the online platforms of MindaNews, a local newspaper and of the Philippine Daily Inquirer, a national broadsheet. The main argument forwarded by the paper is that through deliberate choice of lexical items, headlines will be able to “heighten” or “dilute” truths and facts and contribute to the meaning and portrayal of actors in the news. Using Van Dijk’s Sociocognitive Approach as a framework, the paper posits a multidisciplinary approach in contextualizing meanings; the Framing Approach on the other hand is a tool which enables the researchers to “categorize events, pay attention to some aspects rather than others, and decide what an experience or event means or how it came about”. Taken together, the approaches were able to reveal that MindaNews has the tendency to use passive voice, can be informative yet provocative in the way it languages its headlines. The Philippine Daily Inquirer, on the other hand, frequently uses active voice and can be informative yet emotive and also provocative. The paper also reveals that newspapers intentionally implant and invest attitudes into news reports by choosing words of their interests for impacting readers’ perception about the Marawi crisis. It also shows that word choice can be used by news reporters to convey certain attitudes which may capture the interests of the readers.
The last article Representing Asia: The Language of Tourism Slogans by Esteban and Jalova deals with how the various countries in Asia are being represented in tourism industry by analyzing 23 slogans which were taken from tourism online sites. Just like the previous article, it analyzes the lexical items of the slogans and how these foreground national labels by specifically mentioning the countries they promote and putting into the background Asia as a continent. Reinforcing the findings is the survey done to college students where they rank the slogans according to influence and personal preference. Semantic analysis shows the prevalent use of metaphors to heighten the imagery of the countries being promoted.
A significant gap that the study addresses is how tourism industry can be seen as a discourse and the use of English in the slogans suggests an emerging (or perhaps unnoticed) phrasal structure (adverb + noun) pattern in the crafting of slogans. These are Malaysia’s Truly Asia, Nepal’s Naturally Nepal, and Sri Lanka’s Refreshingly Sri Lanka. The study shows the crucial role of language in the branding of countries
which is very essential in tourism industries.
The four articles show different approaches in the study of language and its various forms. Prevalent in the articles are the shifting of paradigms on how we look at English as a dominant language and how multimodality in communication can reconfigure meanings and representations. Lexical (word) choices can be manipulated to serve the interests of media outlets and linguistic structures do matter in influencing readers’ preferences. In understanding the political, social and cultural dynamics of the societies where we live in, language plays a very crucial role in shaping our views and perspectives. Language, therefore, as a social practice, will never be neutral but always value laden.
Nelia G. Balgoa, DHS
Development issues and crisis situations continue to expose the vulnerability of communities, reveal the weaknesses of social and political institutions, and uncover adaptive capacities and coping mechanisms among societies. This year’s issue of Langkit highlights the experiences of Filipinos shaped by social and political phenomena. The contributions engage various dimensions of scientific inquiry in defining the prominence of Filipino adaptability amid social changes. The four articles underscores the consequences of conflict among children, the value of effective mechanisms towards better performance, the influence of culture and socio-political realities in our writings, and the powerful sense of promoting and protecting ancient traditional heritage as part of our identity as a nation. In sum, these articles highlight the influence of social events in shaping societies.
The article written by Labadisos entitled “Effects of Armed Conflict on Children’s Health: The Case of Libertad, Kauswagan, Lanao del Norte, Philippines” looks into the impact of armed conflict on children’s health and wellness in terms of physical, mental, and social conditions. Labadisos takes us back to 2008 when the proposed agreement on the ancestral domain between the government and the MILF faced indignation from different groups due to legal repercussions, leading to burning and looting in Lapayan, Lanao del Norte, displacing more than 15,000 people. Using qualitative and quantitative data analysis, Labadisos emphasized that stressful events weaken children's resistance against illnesses and significantly affects children’s behavior in general. Children’s vulnerability is aggravated in conflict situations as they experience trauma and fear. Labadisos argued that children’s welfare should be part of government institutions’ priorities in responding to conflict situations and in rehabilitating communities. The article of Labadisos draws us to contemplate on the conditions of the vulnerable sectors in times of crisis and to examine the impacts of institutional mechanisms aimed at improving their welfare.
Doria and Conui’s article entitled “Pagbuo ng Workbuk sa Kasanayan sa Kritikal na Pagiisip ng mga Estudyante” examines ways of enhancing students’ academic writing and critical thinking skills. Doria and Conui’s work addresses the longstanding setback in the education sector enlarged in the implementation of the structural changes in the country’s education system. Acting on our strengths and moving forward requires a deconstruction of the factors that influence performance. The experimental study of Doria and Conui identified the unavailability of effective instructional materials as the primary factor that influences students’ performance. Using a descriptive-quasi experimental study, the study shows significant progress on the performance of students based on pre and posttests results employing the enhanced learning material. Good instructional materials not only stimulate the learners but also enhances the overall performance of students. Similarly, policy responses when crafted and implemented meticulously, address not only pressing issues but also enhance the general welfare. The article of Doria and Conui contends that school administrators should initiate program evaluation to assess and address gaps in curricular offerings. Generally, the authors invite us to be critical of our mechanisms in addressing social issues and encourages us to be reflective of our role and contribution in nation-building particularly in addressing the seemingly simple yet fundamental issues that we face regularly.
The article written by Jimenez and Dalona entitled “Persuasive Faculty and Rhetorical Structure Analysis of Popular Filipino Fiction Book Blurbs from 1980- Present,” analyzes the persuasive utility of book blurbs. Using blurbs from twenty (20) fiction books gathered from Goodreads’ popular Filipino fiction books list – five each from decades 1980, 1990, 2000, and 2010 to date, Jimenez and Dalona revealed the shifting patterns of writing blurbs across decades. The pattern shifts from a historical-political genre in the 1980s to sociocultural genre in the recent years which reflected contemporary social and political phenomena using “contextually motivated language choices.” The premise that literature reflects society accounts for the contribution of literature in nation building . Using content, style and forms, history affirms the power of writers to induce feelings of nationalism. While the relationship of literature and socio-political events is widely recognized, the work of Jimenez and Dalona significantly pointed out the eminence of Filipino fiction blurb writers whose persuasive strategies are a combination of logical and emotional appeals and “more informational, than promotional.” Using Gea-Valor’s (2005) framework on presentational strategies, the authors highlight the textual features in the writing style of Filipinos. Broadly, Jimenez and Dalona pressed on the influence of linguistic features on the rhetorical structure of the literary works and implied the challenge of exploring strategies, themes or topics that best entice readers.
Alauya’s article entitled “A Preliminary Study on the Meranaw Traditional Balod ``TieDye'' Technique in Weaving'' documents two of the most ancient living Meranaw cultural heritage which are weaving and tie-dyeing. Using unearthed crafts and artifacts, Alauya established the influence of Indonesian, Chinese and Indian culture on local Meranaw weaving patterns and techniques. With these influences, Alauya emphasizes the peculiarity of ancient weaving techniques among Meranaw against the weaving patterns and techniques found in other parts of the country and underscores the importance of preserving the Meranaw weaving cultural heritage by empowering younger generations to appreciate and work on the continuity of cultural practices. Alauya’s work points out that we are generally a product of our past experiences, social relationships and political undertakings.
These articles offer students, academics and practitioners’ perspectives of the nation’s current reality based on our evolving ways of addressing challenges, as well as on the impacts of socio-political phenomena in our lives. With the findings presented, we hope to inspire readers to be reflective of our collective potential to address issues that confront us, such as unaccountable political actions, declining quality of public service delivery, and prevalence of indifference towards our cultural and indigenous practices. As we face the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, let us take this chance to strengthen our commitment to be more critical in examining factors that influence institutional responses to crisis and to be more curious on the interplay of various social, economic, cultural and political forces especially on how these dynamic forces shape human interactions and relationships ultimately transforming our cultural and social institutions.
The world has been evolving remarkably in the past decade. Significant digital technological innovations emerged along with the alarming impacts of climate change and urbanization. Hence, the universal call to end poverty, protect the planet, and achieve peace and prosperity for all are at the core of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (2015-2030). However, 2019 came with a worldwide health crisis. The COVID 19 pandemic took a toll on the development efforts of states. The pandemic disrupted the supply chain of products, causing a massive loss of income and job opportunities at the global level. Moreover, it exposed the varying institutional weaknesses in facing crises and sustaining gains. For instance, the Philippines adopted a highly securitized approach in reinforcing public health protocols and imposed the most extended lockdown to contain the pandemic which resulted in unfavorable social and economic conditions. Nevertheless, Filipinos remain hopeful. Survey across social classes and geographical area reveal optimism despite the difficulties and threats of the pandemic. What inspires hope? And will mere hope sustain us to move forward and aspire more despite uncertainties?
Notwithstanding the costs of political and social uncertainties, Filipinos find meaning in everyday struggles. The shared experience of communities continues to foster solidarity at the national and local levels. Filipino solidarity is best exemplified in times of crisis, particularly in the massive mobilization of resources to assist affected communities. While governments are refining institutional processes and mechanisms to respond effectively, the Filipinos remain steadfast in the capacity of the institutions to perform and deliver.
These complexities are captured in this year’s issue of Langkit. The five articles provide perspectives on the collective and nuanced experiences of Filipinos as a nation and as individuals navigating the complexities of life. In doing so, we establish the commonality of experiences across the country while highlighting particularity within those experiences, thus making sense of the cohesive nature of Filipino society.
In particular, the study of Lumintao underscored the institutional gaps in implementing health services in the country and how solidarity among local institutions facilitated the Covid19 response. She investigated the health services rendered in the Province of Bukidnon during the pandemic. She found a mismatch in terms of funding and the function of the local government units to deliver health services. As a result, local officials coordinated with private sectors and other LGUs to augment resources and address challenges. Devolving public services at the local level grants local leaders authority and resources to deliver public goods. However, the efficiency of public service delivery is contingent on several factors, such as but not limited to leadership, resources, and cohesiveness of the organization. Luminato provides a glimpse of how local governments in the country struggle to deliver devolved functions. In essence, the mismatch includes the lack of sufficient capacities among local officials and a lack of strong political will to acquire such capabilities and mobilize resources to provide opportunities for the people. The work of Luminato implies consequences and prospects of institutionalizing reforms in the country, particularly in localizing social service delivery. In addition, it highlights the imperative need to nurture collaborative and inclusive governance at the local level to address institutional gaps and promote good local government.
The article of Alicando, on the other hand, revealed comparable results. Alicando analyzed the stories of those who survived Typhoon Washi which struck the Cities of Iligan and Cagayan de Oro in 2010. Alicando illustrated that the narratives of survivor informants are not exclusive to their own experiences. Instead, the feelings and observations of survivors are integrated. Alicando’s work contributes to the growing literature on Filipino solidarity centered on the collective nature of social relationships. The findings of Alicando and Lumintao support existing claims that solidarity and collaboration among stakeholders in times of crisis facilitate community recovery. Besides understanding cohesion in Filipino society using Western frameworks, literary pieces offer powerful insights into the nation's collective experiences. Quilab, Lumacao, and Gervacio's works focus on the specific accounts and aspirations of a Filipino being an integral part of their community.
The work of Quilab in translating into Filipino Geocallo’s Sugilanon, a Cebuano piece, highlights the geographical identity of regional literature. In the translation process, Quilab focused on the context of the literary work and maintained the original form of words and expressions with cultural and technical meaning. Sugilanon illustrates the life of the people of Lanao del Norte as they experience migration and dislocation of indigenous people to remote areas. Quilab claims that translating Sugilanon into Filipino gives the more comprehensive audience access to understand and evaluate the characteristics of the literary work. Furthermore, the translation mainstreams local literature as an integral part of Philippine literary history as it creatively presents the struggles and persistence of people against transgressions.
The study of Lumacao looks into the ethical features of Macario Tiu’s selected literary works. Using ethical, literary criticism to study the stories, Lumacao explored the norms defined in the stories and illustrated the difference between morality and ethics in analyzing characters' actions. The research offers moral and ethical perspectives on the appreciation of literature. The findings revealed that the characters’ violation of socially accepted norms is based on past experiences and value systems and is morally justified. Thus, Tiu's emphasis on the story's context is necessary for rationalizing the characters' behavior. The short stories of Macario Tiu reflect the strong sense of oriental values in local Philippine literature pakikipag-kapuwa (solidarity). Lumacao’s work implies the value of ethical considerations within cultural norms as it binds the community together.
Furthermore, the award-winning piece entitled “Ang Totoo Raya, Ang Buwan ay Itlog ng Butiki,” is one of German Gervacio’s poems included in this issue. Gervacio won 1st Prize during the 2016 Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature, Tulang Para sa mga Bata. Gervacio’s collection of poems transports readers into a space of modesty and fortitude. Within Gervacio’s words are subtle recognition of social realities and profound reminders of the reasons to remain grateful and faithful to ourselves and the nation.
The shared sense of belonging to a community and the common aspirations that bind individuals together capture solidarity as a concept. Rediscovering Filipino solidarity entails awareness to identify what determines a "sense of belongingness" and what defines our aspirations as a nation divided by social classes. During a pandemic, solidarity among Filipinos emerged. Aside from the shared values of kindness and mutual assistance that facilitated community pantries in various communities, studies showed that protecting the community by reporting Covid positive status prevailed despite facing the stigma within their communities. Hence, our strong sense of togetherness and the collective experience are integrated into one common aspiration: to keep moving forward together.
This year also marks another milestone for the journal. Langkit is now recognized as a university journal of MSU-IIT. Moving forward takes humility to appreciate the journey and relive the small victories. As we celebrate milestones, we continue to aspire to contribute to nation-building by providing a space for broader dissemination of the works in the arts, humanities, and social sciences.
The pandemic has changed the social landscape of the world. The next decade will unfold how the pandemic has transformed the global development agenda. We hope that students, researchers, and practitioners in the field will continue to discover and redefine how communities and institutions respond to the impacts of social forces. Rediscovering concepts that capture the collective aspirations of our people is imperative nowadays as the world faces the economic and political consequences of the pandemic. The process of tracing everyday experiences to nurture cohesion at the global level demands highlighting particular realities encompassing gender, class, and race. The experiences, struggles, and triumphs of communities, particularly those in the periphery, should be mapped out and mainstreamed to provide a fundamental understanding and context of the depth of Filipino solidarity and aspirations. In doing so, we hope to rediscover our collective goal of a nation free of corruption and capitalize on our cohesiveness to mobilize political actions towards institutional reforms.
In the meantime, we remain steadfast in our respective duties, discover practical ways to help and inspire our communities and continue writing and mainstreaming our narratives because our stories keep us together. Despite the post-pandemic uncertainties and institutional weaknesses, we move forward as a nation.
Hazel D. Jovita, PhD