Literature and Culture

Topics: Literature, Poetry, Fiction Pages: 238 (64060 words) Published: August 28, 2013
Domain 3:
Literary and Cultural Texts and Traditions

“Literature is my Utopia.
Here I am not disenfranchised.
No barrier of the senses shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourses of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment”.
~ Helen Keller ~

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I. Literature - General Introduction 3
* Literary Genres and Culture 5
* Genres of Literature 6
* Review Questions 12

II. Literary Forms in Philippine Literature 17
* Pre-Colonial Times 18
* Literature under Spanish Rule 20
* Literature under American Colonial Rule 22
* Contemporary Period 23
* Review Questions 26

III. Epochal Development of Philippine Literature 31
* Pre-colonial Times 31
* Review Questions 42
* Spanish Colonialism (1565-1897) 46
* Review Questions 1 51
* Review Questions 2 93
* U. S. Colonialism (1898- 1945) 105 * Review Questions 122
* Under the Republic (1946-1985) 127
* Review Questions 148
* Contemporary Literature (1986 to Present) 158 * Review Questions 170

References 177

I. Literature – General Introduction

“Literature is my Utopia. Here I am not disenfranchised. No barrier of the senses shuts me out from the sweet, gracious discourses of my book friends. They talk to me without embarrassment or awkwardness” (Helen Keller)

Keller could not have been more correct in this insight about literature, and scarcely would anyone who has had a lifetime with the written word raise any issue about its faultlessness. Man with his complex, often unfathomable and unpredictable thoughts, feelings and actions, and many times restrained by societal norms from openly exposing what he has inside him, considers literature as a socially acceptable vehicle for unrestrained self-expression. Literature is life. It is a mirror of man’s desires and aspirations, his ambitions and accomplishments, his fears and anxiety, his joyful and fulfilling moments. Through it, he records his experiences of triumphs and downfalls, laughter and anguish, determination and indecision—from things phenomenal to matters mundane. It is only through literature that the human mind is able to successfully transcend all material barriers to reveal its essence which constitutes the “isness” of man’s being. Literature, then, is the totality of humanity. The famous French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre succinctly said it all in the following line: “If literature is not everything, it’s not worth a single hour of someone’s trouble” (

What is Literature?
▪ So broad and deep is the extent and scope of literature that putting up a definition for it is almost like limiting its parameters. However, for academic purposes, it will be relevant to explain what the concept encompasses. ▪ On a general perspective, anything that is written is classified as literature. ▪ On a stricter sense, however, and across cultures and ages, literature is associated with a poem, or a fiction article, or a stage play, a book or a classroom lesson. ▪ Literature, as the body of written works of a language, period or culture, and produced by scholars and researchers, reminds us of stories, epics, sacred scriptures and classical works of the ancient and modern times. Literary works are portrayals of the thinking patterns and social norms prevalent in society. Classical literary works serve as a food for thought, imagination and creativity.

▪ A literary article should interest, entertain, stimulate, broaden the...
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