"I am an instrument in the shape
of a WOMAN trying to translate pulsations
into images
for the relief of the body
and the reconstruction of the mind."

written by Adrienne Cecile Rich

Thursday, October 12, 2006

"half the wrong conclusions at which mankind arrive are reached... by mistaking general resemblance or imaginary similarity for real identity."

henry john palmerston said it all.

yesterday in class, mam pagli showed us a few clips of filipinos in hollywood and foreign films. oh my, i felt laughed at. transgressed, as bell hooks would call it. i really felt humiliated seeing how they depict filipinos, especially since they could use another nationality (maybe their own) to play that role. i didn't see any sense why it should be a filipino. i especially felt transgressed as to how they portrayed the filipina wife in the film Priscilla (aussie film), because, as it is, i could hear laughter inside the movie theater while it is being played. laughter at the crazy filipina.

are we just these portrayals in the global village, domestic helpers, boxers, prostitutes, and show girls?

proving them wrong as to who we really are and what we can do as filipinos doesn't really matter much if we can't prove to our fellow filipinos that we can do something for change in this country.

i was transgressed not just because i felt bad at the portrayal, but because at times they are right. how else would these images proliferate all over the world if we ourselves see us that way and if we ourselves are that way?

i learned in media promotion that the image of one product or one outfit completely differs from its identity. the image is how the product or the outfit is perceived by the people, and the identity is its nature and what it really is.

the problem with us filipinos is that we project an image into the outside world, but we do not fully understand our identity (oh, debates on our identity can go long and far. let's reserve that for another discourse). what is the nature of the filipino? who is the filipino?


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Saturn's precious star
the elder sister
a squirrel under the oak
never early
Venus' healing herb
la luna de la noche
a girl of wishes
pride inside
pretending to be smart
nicely tucked in
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Location: San Juan, Philippines

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