Thursday, November 27, 2008


In "Things Fall Apart," manliness is always associated with physical strength and bravery. How about you? What is your idea or concept of true "manliness”?

My number one criterion for "manliness" is a man's sense of RESPONSIBILITY. Men right now are classified as the macho men, the metro-sexual, the "just-effeminate" men and lastly, the self-proclaimed gays. But for me, these classifications are not important. What I deem worth considering is how a man faithfully loves and supports his family's needs despite the heavy yoke placed on their shoulders (because I think they are also discriminated in some ways)and the testing temptations of the modern world. So long as he knows his limitations (and not forget his loyalty to his girlfriend or wife), so long as he does not let other suffer because of his pride...I think he is already MAN enough for me.


Which of the Igbo traditions you think they should still retain and preserve even amid modernization?

I think the system of SHARE-CROPPING should still be observed in the Igbo tribe most especially nowadays that capitalism and competition are very much affecting the moral and social responsibility of workers and businessmen because of modernization. Share-cropping teaches farmers to be cooperative and, at the same time, empathetic with the difficult situation of fellow farmers. This is something that not only the Filipinos but the whole world, should learn--the value of helping our fellowmen (especially in times of crisis) instead of bring them down just to gain superiority.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Looking at the denouement of the play, do you think that MOV is really a comedy? Or rather, is it more of tragedy? Justify your answer.

I think "MOV" is comedy in label or nomenclature in the sense that it ended happily with the reconciliation of the two romantic couples and the good news about Antonio's ships. But if I will look deeper into it, I can consider it as tragic simply because not any of the major characters really exemplified the true spirit of mercy as advocated by Portia herself. Rather alienating Shylock (not in the sense that he will not be judged according to the law), they could have given him more guidance and chance for enlightenment. Maybe Shakespeare intended this really to happen such that the readers would see how Westerners, during those "golden years," rejoice in the downfall of other people--maybe the "cancer" in his society that Rizal also portrayed in Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo.


If God will be one of the judges present during Antonio's trial, how would he judge the situation?

Personally, I think God will not allow Antonio to let Shylock be converted to Christianity because his religion gives him a higher purpose in life, more than his possessions. Maybe God will just ask him to have regular counsel with a rabbi so that he would truly live up to the teachings of his religion. I think he will also confiscate maybe only half of his possessions to teach him to reflect about what is really important in life.

What do you think?

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Examining the relationship between Portia and Bassanio and Nerissa and Gratiano, do you think that a successful relationship can possibly start with "love at first sight"?

I personally find the development of their relationship as very weak in foundation because they fell in love at first sight. Yes, they can get attracted to each other but what happens after that is more important. I think they should have taken efforts first to get to know each other better before finally getting married. For an instance, Portia, though Bassanio was the one who won the challenge, should have at least waited more than a month to really assure herself that she has the right man to live with for eternity. Also Gratiano should have been wiser not to just be "inspired" by Bassanio's true love, but rather to discern whether what attracted him through his eyes would also attract his soul. Well, good for them, the guys caught the right fish! But in real life, this does not always happen, sadly.

What do you think?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


If you would be given a chance to visit Venice during the Renaissance period using a "time machine," who would you want to befriend among the characters of Act 1 and why?

If I would have the chance to go to Venice, I would definitely look for Shylock first and befriend him (if he would let me because I'm a Christian). I would like to personally find out myself whether he is really evil as portrayed in the story or whether he is just bad because the society made him one. I'm also interested to know how they got discriminated by Venetians and whether it is really true that they got so much "profit" from the Christians despite their situation. More than that, I am actually hoping that there's something more about his personality-- something GOOD that was just overshadowed by the "romantic" characters in the story.

How about you?

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


In line with our Book Week celebration, our blog question will be:


I have always admired Dr. Venancio Mendiola, my literature professor for being such a voracious reader. Even if he is already 69 years old, he still remembers the intricate details of the books that he have read and taught his students, even as far as 1970's! He would know the exact images that the autor used, how many times a certain phrase appeared in the book, how many dreams a character has in a book, and many more! I mean, how can such a person be fully focused on READING to its fullest sense. I myself digress many times while reading even the most interesting books. Maybe just like Sir Mendiola, I need to learn how to READ enthusiastically, savoring each word, phrase and image so that I could completely grasp the beauty and message of the book.

How about you? Who is your model reader?