Comparative Paper On The Culture Of Philippines And Malaysia

1477 words - 6 pages

Comparative Paper on the Culture of Philippines and Malaysiaby: Rose Camille O de AsisThe Philippines and Malaysia have a long history of close economic and political relations. They were founding members of the ASEAN and important trading partners, thus cultural ties between these countries are also evident. The most colorful and celebrated parts of every Malay and Filipino life-the puberty, the courtship, engagement and marriage. These events are essential and should be properly and delicately observed.The stage wherein a child reached at least the age of ten, he/she undergoes changes in his/her mental, physical and emotional state is called the puberty. It is also the transition stage from childhood to adulthood and these changes prepare every individual to the upcoming responsibility that lies ahead. A typical Filipino and Malay boy undergoes circumcision during this stage. A man who specializes in circumcision (manunuli: Visayan and mudim: Malay) were invited in the community to perform mass circumcision using a razor-sharp knife or bolo. But this type of circumcision is now only performed in rural areas since most parents preferred doctors to perform this process mainly for safety and health purposes. Circumcision, in these two countries, is viewed as essential for health purposes and a passageway to manhood. But unlike in the Philippines, a feast is done after the Malay boys' circumcision to congratulate them. For females in the Philippines and in Malaysia, there is no feast or celebration held when a female child reaches puberty. During the stage of infancy, Malay girls are circumcised (Clitoridectomy) by removing a tiny piece of skin in the clitoris. In the Philippines, a female undergoing this stage is given counseling by her mother and elder sisters on hygiene and modesty. The main difference of the circumcision process between these two countries is that in the Philippines, circumcision has no religious significance.The next critical stage of life during puberty is the dating and courtship. Filipino and Malay teenagers get to know each other usually in schools and engage in dating usually in foursomes or more. Malay and Filipino women strive to protect their reputation and should show modesty and shyness. These cultures also believed that it is still essential to obtain the girl's parents approval before starting a formal courtship which is viewed as 'house-calling' (umaakyat ng bahay) for Filipinos and 'merisik' as Malaysian counterpart.Another important stage is the engagement. In Malaysia, once a proposal has been accepted, the boy's family sends his mother and some elderly representatives to make the necessary arrangements with the girl's family. During the 'pertunangan' or engagement party, they decide for the wedding day, the bride-price (helps pay for wedding expenses) and bring gifts of fruits, cakes, clothing, jeweleries, collectively known as 'hantaran'. The highlight of the 'Pertunangan' is the putting of the engagement...

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