The Philippines in Southeast
The relationship between
the Philippines and the rest of Southeast Asia
is distinguished by the fact that:
in the Philippines was extremely marginal.
There were no great Indic architecture,
religious rituals nor elaborate civilizations
in the country (with the exception of
Muslim sultanates in the south)
prior to the arrival of the Spaniards
in the 1500s.
Carlos V. Francisco, 1958
Miagao Church Iloilo
Philippines is largely
a Roman Catholic country
in a Buddhist-Islamic world of Southeast Asia.
Like Thailand, it has a troubled history
with its minority Islamic peoples.
Although a heavily westernized population
and culture on a superficial level,
it is Southeast Asian in many important
cultural ways. Its current direction
of forging closer and stronger ties
with the rest of ASEAN is marked
by a different attitude by most Filipinos
toward issues of human rights
and political freedom.
ni Jorge Pineda,
ni Hugo C. Yonzon,
the Philippines' western-style democracy
has been a cause of criticism
by other Southeast Asian states
who blame it for problems of
of new legislation or
for debates that stall reform.
At the same time, however,
many Southeast Asians admire
the Philippines exactly
for these reasons,
in particular its more open society
and a free press.
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