Filipino, Pilipino and TagalogNovember 16, 2008 by Bilingual Pen filed under Language, Opinion | 5,932 views
(Basaentayo man ti essay ni Dr. Ricardo Ma. Duran Nolasco, faculty iti University of the Philippines ken nagpaay a Komisioner ti Komisyon sa Wikang Filipino, maipanggep iti Tagalog, Pilipino wenno Filipino. Agsasabali kadi dagitoy a lengguage wenno maymaysa laeng a lengguahe nga agpampammarang nga agsasabali babaen iti panagaramatna iti nagduduma a nagan? Kadagiti linguista ken nagadal wenno estudiante iti linguistika, nalawag a maymaysa a lengguahe daytoy. Ti Filipino ket maysa laeng a varayti wenno dialect ti Tagalog.)
FILIPINO, PILIPINO AND TAGALOG
By Ricardo Ma. Duran Nolasco
(Philippine Daily Inquirer, 14 November 2008)
TAGALOG, PILIPINO AND FILIPINO ARE LABELS by which the national language has come to be known at different periods of our history. In the early 1900s, people of different ethnic origins were communicating with each other with an evolving Manila-based lingua franca. Commerce and trade motivated the need for this common language. The elite spoke Spanish or English.
In the 1930s the Quezon government chose Tagalog as the basis for our national language, making it in effect the national language. It was to be the symbol of our nationhood, much like the flag and the anthem. It was to be “enriched primarily through the Philippine tongues” although the law also provided for its purification. It was also to be taught in school as a subject.
In 1959, a memorandum from the Department of Education changed the name of the language (and the subject) to “Pilipino” to remove the regional bias that the term “Tagalog” evoked. This didn’t work. Instead, two strains of the national language developed. The first was the school variety, which abhorred “loans” from other languages and was difficult to learn even for native Tagalogs because of the way it was taught.
The other was a liberal and vibrant lingua franca. It was predominantly oral with a Tagalog core, used by the masses and propagated by the mass media with all the local contributions, accents, and borrowings from English and Spanish. In 1987, the makers of the new constitution finally gave recognition to this idiom. They renamed it “Filipino” to signal its non-exclusivist and multilingual character. It accepted contributions from all Philippine and foreign languages and it was used as the official language and medium of instruction, together with English.
Are “Tagalog,” “Pilipino” and “Filipino” different languages? No. Someone speaking in Tagalog or Pilipino can be understood by anyone claiming to speak in Filipino, and vice versa.
Some teachers equate Tagalog with “purist” usage, and Filipino with “non-purist” or liberal usage. To them pulong and guro are Tagalog words, while miting and titser are Filipino words. “Word borrowing,” however, is not a reliable basis for differentiating languages. ZamboangueŮo (Chavacano) borrowed heavily from Spanish but evolved a completely different grammar unintelligible to Spanish speakers.