Filipino English10 March 2009 at 4:09 AM | Posted in News | 3 Comments
Here’s an interesting quote from American T. Inglis Moore, writing in 1930:
“The Filipino has to learn not only to write with English but to write against it. He has to write English without becoming an Englishman or American. This difficult task is necessary not because Filipino English is better than English, but because a Filipino literature must remain Filipino if it intends to be literature.”
Filipino-American novelist Eric Gamalinda quotes this passage in his blog, as well as a similar statement in 1954 by Philippine National Artist Nick Joaquin:
“There are many young writers, and they are doing something to the English language: it is no longer simple English; not the English of America or England, but their English.”
Writers have been using second languages for a long time, but literary critics are slow to realize that the use by a writer of a second language has major implications on how a literary text can and should be read.