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Time: 3:00-5:30 Days: T Room: Moore 120

Instructor: Ruth Elynia S. Mabanglo, PhD Office: Spalding 459

Consultation: By Appointment Tel: 956-6970


The Course | Course Objectives | Expectations | The Text |

Schedule of Readings/Activities | Requirements/Grading
The literature of the Philippines is multi-faceted. It is written in many languages (in the indigenous languages of the Filipinos such as Ilokano, Tagalog, Cebuano, Pampango, Bikol, etc.; in the languages of her conquerors (Spanish and English) and covers a lot of themes. This course will sample only the literature written by Filipinos and Filipino Americans in English.
The literary works were chosen to provide the reader general background knowledge on how the Filipino writers view themselves (and the other Filipinos) in various context (in different times and space)—in their family life, in the community, at work, in war and in love. One important aspect of the course deals with the subject of diaspora or migration. Filipinos in America wrote short stories, poems and essays dealing with the views or sentiments about this topic. There are also writings that deal with migration in other Southeast Asian countries, in Europe or the Middle East.

Through the literature, it is hoped that the readers would be able to reclaim their heritage (if they are Filipino Americans) or understand where the Filipinos are coming from (if they are Americans), to identify themselves in the characters they read, and to be inspired in writing their thoughts, sharing their feelings or simply, to appreciate what others have written, said or done.


Through this course, students will

  • Know Philippine Literature written by Filipino writers in English; its history and development from the American period to the present,

  • Read selected and important writings of Filipinos in English in various genres such as short story, poetry, play and essay.

  • Analyze certain selections using standard parameters drawn from different approaches such as formalistic, psychological, sociological, postcolonial, etc.

  • Write or make a critical discussion of a selection or novel, which shall be presented to the class.

  • Develop understanding of Filipino/Filipino American values, customs and traditions through the various stories, poems, essays and plays that will be read in class

  • Discover the strengths and weaknesses; values and traditions of the contemporary Filipinos/Filipino Americans emerging from various situations, events and problems given them.

  • Delineate the difference between perception and reality; between reading and experiencing Philippine contemporary literature

  • Develop insights and communicate them with others through oral and written intercourse.


Each student is expected to:

1. Attend all classes; participate in the discussions and submit all requirements.

(It would be appreciated deeply if you call or email teacher about your absence before it takes place.)

2. Listen to the instructor when she is giving a lecture or to classmates who are doing presentations or simply reciting. (Pls turn off all cellular phones during class time.)

3. Be responsible in terms of preparedness for discussion, tests, projects and activities. (If you are assigned a date for a presentation or activity, see to it that you are not absent. Disruption of scheduled activities due to absences results in loss of time, this badly affects class schedule).

3. Conduct independent study and research in background and relevant information that can enrich knowledge and understanding of the topic being discussed. (The instructor always appreciates students who walks the "extra" mile).

4. Share findings of independent study in written reports and group discussions.

5. Complete and submit all requirements on time.

IP 363 -- Readings in Contemporary Philippine Literature in English compiled by Dr. Ruth Elynia S. Mabanglo

(Available at Professional Image, King St. across 7-11 Grocery Store)


Filipino novels in English (as chosen by students), available at the Asia Collection, Hamilton Library

Schedule of Readings/Activities



Jan 8

Introduction to the Course

History of Philippine Literature (Overview)

Video Presentation: “Panitikan” by CCP

Listening activities

Jan 16

Discussion: How to Read Literature; Approaches in Understanding Literature; How were units divided

“I am a Filipino”

Jan 23

The Way We Were

“Tanabata’s Wife”, “How My Brother Leon Brought Home a Wife”; “”Midsummer”; “The Wedding Dance”

Jan 30

The Way We Were

“Summer Solstice”; “Three Generations”

“May Day Eve”; "Sugar and Salt"

Feb 6

Our Daily Bread

“Hunger in Barok”, “Crowns and Brawn” “Servant Girl”,

“The World is an Apple” (Handout); "The Grave Diggers"

Feb 10: Filipino and Philippine Literature Program/Katipunan

PICNIC (attendance/participation required)

Feb 13

Of Love and Relations

“Tong”, “Grandmother”, “Low Wall”, “Slave Woman of Tarlac, Tarlac”, "An American Romance"

Feb 20

Diaspora Tales

“The Romance of Magno Rubio”, “Immigration Blues”,

“Scent of Apples”, “The Day the Dancers Came”

(distribute midterm examination questions)

Video Viewing : “ The Day the Dancers Came”



Feb 27

Diaspora Tales

“Her Wild American Self”, “Lenox Hill, December 1991”, “Peregrinasyon”, selections from America is in the Heart (handout)

Video Viewing

March 6

History, Politics, etc.

“Rice Wine”, “Sugar and Salt”, Recto and the Nationalist Crusade”; “Like the Molave”, “The Execution” (to be provided)

March 13

Snapshots of the Filipina

“Divide by Two”, “The Other Woman”, “Sabina”, “Nina”; "Slave Woman of Tarlac"; "Definitions, Redefinitions"

March 27


April 3

Readings to be provided later

See April 11-13

April 10

Readings to be provided later

See April 11-13

April 11-13

Southeast Asian Literature In Translation Panel (April 11)

Filipino/FilAm Writers Roundtable Discussion (April 12)

"Sa Indayog ng Wika"/In the Rhythm of Words (April 13)

(Attendance/Participation required; at least 2)

April 17

The Filipino Novels in English

Introduction to the Filipino Novel (lecture)

Individual Presentations

(Attendance /Participation to all presentations required)

April 24

The Filipino Novels in English

Individual Presentations

May 1

The Filipino Novels in English

Individual Presentations

May 9

The Filipino Novels in English

Continuation of Presentation


Class Participation

(attendance/participation, discussion, assignments) -- 35% (350 pts)

Formal Oral/Writing Presentations (group and individual) -- 35% (350 pts)

Participation in Cultural/Literary Events* -- 20% (200 pts)

Exams and other writings -- 10% (100 pts)

TOTAL 100% (1000 PTS)

1. CLASS PARTICIPATION (35% or 350 pts)
Includes attendance and participation; emailing of assignments; informal panel discussions and group activities
Presence in the classroom entails active participation in the discussion. If there is group work, in-class writing activities, games, role-plays, etc., students are expected to cooperate/join. Only one absence (equivalent to three in regular scheduled 3-unit courses), excused or unexcused, can be tolerated for the duration of the course. Students are expected to inform the teacher ahead of time if an absence cannot be prevented.

The teacher will issue attendance/participation cards to each student for the duration of the semester. Each card is worth 15 pts for which the teacher will collect at the end of each meeting period. It will be worth 225 pts.

Assignments and email discussions will be given 125 pts.

*2 formal group presentations; 1 individual presentation (novel)
Since the class is also designated as oral communication intensive (OCI), students are required to have presentations. The OCI grade will be based on one formal panel presentation (group) and one individual presentation (novel). Each of these presentations will be given 100 pts. (200 pts for formal oral presentations)

One major paper should be submitted, typewritten in double space using 12 font size of Times or Times New Roman (50 pts). You will also be required to write a feedback to your classmate's paper. (25 pts will be given to this feedback and will be taken from #1, last sentence)

The other paper is a review of a Filipino/Filipino American novel in English. This will be the final paper. A guideline for writing the review will be provided. (100 pts)
Apart from the feedback that your classmate will provide for the two major papers, the teacher will provide assessment to your writing to help you revise your work. The grade will be given only after each revision.

Students in this class are expected to attend the picnic on Feb 10 and two other literary events that the Filipino and Philippine Literature Program have designated for spring. Participants in the literary events include serving in the organizational planning; participation in the program; being member of the front of the house committees. 20 pts for the picnic will be given; 90 pts per literary event will be the maximum points depending upon individual participation.

There will be a midterm examination (75 pts) and other writings (like reaction paper, etc.)
* BIBLIOGRAPHY AND LIST OF NOVELS (will be given as handouts)

* Focus Designation: DL, O, W

If you are a student with a disability and have a disability-related needs or concerns, please contact the Kokua Program at 956-7511 or drop in to Room 13 in the new Student Services Center.

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