A Tale of Two Families.

Dramatizes the lives of the Valdez Protestant family and Garcia Catholic family, highlighting everyday Filipino life. Explores how and why religion affects each family according to underlying perceptions of the world and why Catholics have more children than Protestants, and differences between rich/poor, exploiters/exploited, powerful/powerless, men/women. How do they actually come about?

Here I narrate with insight and drama the lives of two families, one Protestant, the other Roman Catholic, in the rural Philippines. I narrate how the Garcia family, Catholics, headed by Juan, live out their lives. Up the street is Wenico and Lennie Valdez, Protestants. The story depicts, also, how they live their lives. Other characters impinge upon both the Garcia and Valdez households, bringing twists and turns, and highlighting certain characteristics of not only the two families but also of everyday life in the Philippines.

Both the Garcia and Valdez families are about equal in socio-economic status, and largely in terms of education, also. But there are differences, as will become evident. Perhaps the main difference is their religion, and it is worth exploring how and why this affects how each family, and each individual, lives out their lives according to the underlying perception of the world, grounded in their religious orientation. In particular, Mark, an anthropologist in the narrative, is particularly interested in why Catholics vis-à-vis Protestants have more children: it’s not a matter of “if ” but, for him, why.

The other characters and events highlight differences between the two families, and between Protestants and Catholics, between rich and poor, exploiters and exploited, powerful and powerless, men and women, and so on. But what is fundamental to their similarities and differences? How do they actually come about?

Profile Photo Paul W Mathews

About Paul W Mathews

Dr. Paul Mathews is a Sociologist & an Anthropologist with 25yrs research & teaching in Asian studies, esp. in Philippine society & culture. He has served as the Managing Editor of Pilipinas: A Journal of Philippine Studies, & is current Secretary of the Philippines Studies Assoc of Aust.

Dr. Mathews has authored numerous books, both fiction and non-fiction, & academic papers, and runs the Warrior Publishers Indie

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