Lesson 10: The Philippines

This week All Around This World is going to The Philippines, an archipelago of 7,107 islands (which would be knock-your-socks off impressive if nearby Indonesia didn’t have 17,000). The Philippines is unique among Southeast Asian countries in the fact that its colonial history brought it under the control of the Spanish, and the United States. Pilipino culture is a mix of Spanish, American and indigenous strains, with influence from others in the region such as China, Malaysia and Indonesia thrown in for good measure. That makes the Philippines particularly complicated from a “cultural-fusion” perspective. Though, because so much of this fusion happened during Spanish and then American rule, Westerners may find the Philippines’ dominant culture more easy to access than that of other Asian nations.

HISTORY: Thousands of Southeast Asians islands with a complicated Spanish past.

MUSIC: Making the most of Spanish melodies.

LANGUAGE: The quest for a lingua franca….

TINIKLING: Two bamboo poles and a very hoppy dance.

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