For centuries, Filipino women have thought themselves of being dominated by men. From the Spanish era to the American colonization, they were brought up to believe that men are leaders in society and that they are subordinate to them [men]. This therefore affects their views on femininity. It has been said in Johanna Francisco’s Essence of a Filipino Woman that women in the Philippines are luckier among women of other countries in Asia. This has been so because men in Philippine society appreciate and honor them.
In fact, it is being shown on how they [women] are permitted to educate themselves, work, and possess belongings which are prohibited [or not normal] in other Asian countries. But above all, it is primarily because of their character or “role” as a [loving] mother. How would one know what a Filipina is? Well, a Filipino woman is described as shy, reserved, prim, and discreet. She is cautious, bashful, charming, and meek. She could either be “Mestiza”, “Chinita”, or “Morena”. She is a lover, and, at times of trouble, a fighter.
She, by nature, possesses a strong faith. She may not admit her being religious, but deep inside, she trusts in God’s loving power. It is being seen on how she always puts herself in the care of the Lord and prays for everybody she loves. She thinks of other people first before herself. She plays different roles in the society. According to Francisco, “she is a considerate daughter, a loyal friend, and a supportive and loving wife?. She is the driving force in the family, in a marriage, or in a relationship?. But for the most part, she is dignified”.
Francisco also describes her as being humorous. She laughs a lot, making it one of her best asset. She is also an optimistic person who always finds “positive” things in “dire situations”. This paper talks about how Filipino women morality has been changed or influenced by modernization, therefore losing the real Filipina within. It tackles and touches on issues that are degrading to Filipino women. It has five major parts. The first would be the definition of morality and modernization, with an explanation of the connection between the two.
Next is the evolution of Filipino women which starts from the very beginning of Philippine history. This would include mainly Filipino women of yesterday, and Filipino women of today. The third would be the beginning of modernization in the Philippines. This part discusses how modernization entered our country. The fourth would be Filipino women’s response to the fast growing modernization, and the last talks on the effects it [modernization] has given to Filipino women, specifically, their morality.
The last pages of this paper would include a researched survey on what young adults of Silliman University of Dumaguete City, specifically from the College of Business Administration, thinks about modern Filipina morals as influenced by fast westernization of the Philippines. Modernization in the Philippines The Philippines has not been considered different from other countries. Like the countries in Africa and Asia (particularly southeast Asia), it has gone through experiences that deeply influenced Filipino customs and beliefs.
It all began from the Spanish colonization to the American era to the commonwealth years and to the decades of independence that the Philippines has slowly changed its people due to factors of modernity such education, mass media, technological advancement, and the like. These changes are seen most commonly in the urban areas such as the cities and larger towns. It is in these areas where westernization is concentrated brought about by television, radio, and news papers. The impact of modernization in the Philippines has been “persuasive” since the first ever colonizer stepped into its lands.
The Philippines’ attempt to compete in the highly modernized world can greatly affect the attitude of women today. However, according to a Filipino psychologist, the Filipinos have this “split-level personality. ” This personality explains that some values of a Filipino remain the same even though some of his or her outlooks and aspects have been modernized. But this greatly depends on how well a person weigh things over. If he/she prefers modernization more than tradition, the “split-level personality” thing dissolves. This has been evidenced by Filipino women’s responses to modernization.
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