Kultura Filipino

Filipino Culture

Filipino culture or Kultura Filipino as said in the native language is a troublesome thing for many Westerners to grasp. The differences in culture causes a lot of disagreements.
Yanks and Brits often come to the Philippines thinking that since it is an English speaking country, people will be like them. This is just not true. The Philippines is Asian and the culture is Asian. Though there is clearly a blending from the Chinese, Americans and the Spanish.

Still, it is plainly Asian and its own unique Filipino way of doing things. The Philipines is extremely conservative though many get the mistaken impression from visiting areas that cater to the steamier side of the Philippines. The primary area for naughtiness is Angeles City. Angeles City is a deficient representation of the country as a whole. Even Manila is very much different than 90% of Filipino.

While Manila is colossal with over 10 million people, the Philippines has more than 70 million people. The people living out in the provinces are vastly different, far more conservative and often much less accustomed to interacting with foreigners. 

One huge area of misunderstanding comes from rudimentary communication styles. Filipino are said to be less diverse than say the USA. When communities are less diverse, they tend to use fewer words to communicate. It is easier to get your message across when there is an inherent understanding.

In a country like the USA, the giant melting pot requires people to more fully explain their feelings and intentions.
Occasionally it can seem like you have to reach down with pliers to get information from a Filipina. This difference in communication is one reason for that. The Westerner is left feel the Filipina has something to hide; they are being evasive and dishonest. But she’s interacting with you I a way that is normal within Filipino culture.

On the other hand, Americans have a reputation for being loud mouthed; I expect this too is based in our different communication styles. Filipino don’t protest a lot and when they do, they’ll express it once and usually move on. While an American is more likely to throw a public temper tantrum while visiting a retail shop, such actions in Filipino culture is not acceptable.

This is only a brief introduction to Filipino culture. If you’re thinking about living in the Philippines, open your mind a bit and try to learn rather than judge. If you do, I think you’ll come to love Filipino culture as much as I do.

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