Seryeng Panayam Manuel L. Quezon 2019 features studies on preservation of indigenous languages

In celebration of the Buwan ng Wika 2019 (National Language Month) with the theme, “Wikang Katutubo: Tungo sa Bansang Filipino” (Indigenous Language: Towards a Filipino Nation), the UST Department of Filipino held the Seryeng Panayam Manuel L. Quezon 2019 on August 29, 2019 at the Lourdes J. Custodio ICD Room, Albertus Magnus Building. For this year, four faculty researchers from the Research Center for Social Sciences and Education (RCSSEd) working on the documentation and preservation of indigenous languages Mag-antsi (Central Luzon) and Asi (Romblon) presented their papers.

Assoc. Prof. Rosalyn G. Mirasol, Ph.D., who is affiliated with the Department of English,  presented her paper “Saloobin sa Pagbasa: Sarbey ng mga Mag-aaral sa Baitang 4 Hanggang 6 ng Tatlong Mababang Paaralan sa Tarlac” (Attitude towards Reading: A Survey of Grades 4 to 6 Pupils of Three Elementary Schools in Tarlac). Her research aimed at identifying the significant difference between interest in academic reading and interest in leisure reading vis-à-vis gender, age and grade level among the Grades 4 to 6 pupils of the target schools in Tarlac. Her study concluded that as the pupils progressed in their grade levels, their positive attitude toward reading decreased. With the premise that reading is a key to learning their own language, intervention must be done to build a positive attitude towards reading among the Aeta pupils. As part of service learning, the elementary education students from the College of Education were encouraged to produce learning materials in Mag-antsi in their course ‘Teaching of the Mother Tongue’ to assist in the teaching of the indigenous language among the Aeta pupils.

In her paper “Ang Pormulang Etnolingguwistiko sa Pagsusuri ng Kalidad ng Pagbasa: Kaso ng mga Kuwentong Mag-antsi” (The Ethnolinguistic Formula in the Assessment of Reading Quality: The Case of Mag-antsi Stories), Asst. Prof. Evalyn B. Abiog, Ph.D., aimed to document Mag-antsi stories that reflect the beliefs and traditions of the Aeta Mag-antsi, construct an ethnolinguistic formula that would analyze the “readability” of the said stories, and measure the Mag-antsi stories using the ethnolinguistic formula. Abiog, who teaches with the Department of English, was able to document ten Mag-antsi stories and in the process, identify the common themes of such stories in relation to the beliefs and traditions of the Aeta community. She was also able to assess each story using the ethnolinguistic formula, and was able to identify the grade level for which each story is most appropriate. This formula may be used to assess other text types of the Mag-antsi literature.

The accuracy, clarity and acceptability of Mag-antsi oral narratives from Bamban, Tarlac translated from Mag-antsi to Filipino were assessed by Asst. Prof. Racquel R. Jimenez of the Department of English, in her paper “Kalidad ng Salin ng mga Pasalitang Salaysay ng Mag-antsi” (Quality of Mag-antsi Oral Narratives). Her study concluded that the existing translated oral narratives of the community are lacking in the qualities of a good translation.

In her paper “Asanrokan Kita: Mga Ambag ng Wikang Asi sa Bansang Filipino” (Asanrokan Kita: The Contributions of the Asi Language to the Filipino Nation), Asst. Prof. Wennielyn F. Fajilan, Ph.D., of the Department of Filipino, provided a comprehensive documentation of terminologies and phrases elucidating the concept of “kapuwa” in the Asi-Simaranhon language of Romblon. Her study focused on seven constructs of kapuwa in the Asi-Simaranhon language, which include kapuwa as a form of relationship, kapuwa in the core of different levels of bayanihan, and kapuwa in relation to food. Under each construct, the type, etymology, meaning and use of each sample word were explained. The paper concluded that Filipino as a national language is enriched by words contributed by the local languages, such as Asi.

Seryeng Panayam Manuel L. Quezon is an annual lecture series featuring Thomasian researchers who present their papers in the national language with the aim of contributing to the intellectualization of the Filipino language. Inaugurated in 2018, the colloquy is held in honor of former Philippine President Manuel L. Quezon, a prominent Thomasian, and the Father of the Filipino Language, whose birthday, August 19, is the reason for the observance of the National Language Month every August.

The seryeng panayam , which was attended by an estimated 100 participants, was open to UST faculty members who teach the mother tongue, and those who teach the English language, while the student participants were primarily from the College of Education. 

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