Libmonster ID: SE-368

Moscow: Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences, 2011, 496 p.

(History of the countries of the East. XX century)

Published by the Institute of Oriental Studies series " History of the countries of the East. XX century" was supplemented not only with a good, but, I would say, an excellent book by Yu. O. Levtonova " History of the Philippines. XX century".

The 20th century in the history of this country is clearly marked: 1901-the annexation of the archipelago by the United States of America, 2000-the beginning of 2001-an acute crisis of power and a change of presidents. Other Southeast Asian countries with the same accuracy (up to a year!) the arrival of the XX century and parting with it can not boast. In general, the Philippines is a unique country in the region: it is a Christian country, the first to become a colony, which survived the anti-colonial revolution at the end of the XIX century (in most Southeast Asian countries this happened only after the Second World War).

I will note several cardinal features of the monograph. First, it is the result of many years of research by Yu. O. Levtonova on Philippine history and modernity. The author has creatively interpreted and used the works of both domestic, Filipino, and Western scientists, as well as her own observations and conversations with Filipino and American researchers, publicists, and politicians during her visits to the Philippines and the United States. Throughout the book (especially in the chapters devoted to the history of the Philippines after 1945), the author agrees or polemics with domestic and foreign researchers, consistently pursuing his point of view, which makes the presentation and conclusions of the monograph very convincing and reasonable. As a result, a deeply grounded, highly independent work has been created, which can be safely placed in the first row of modern world Filipino studies. Secondly, the author was able to show (and, of course, understand) the deep connection of the events of the XX century with the previous history of the Philippines, in particular, using examples of the peculiarities of the Philippine elite and the analysis of cultural, historical and sociopsychological factors. Third, the history of the country in the book is lively, with characters, and fascinating on almost all pages. Readers of this book are strongly advised not to be lazy and read (read it, not look at it) the notes to the chapters, which contain a lot of interesting information about political and economic history, personalities, and episodes.

The structure of the monograph is clearly thought out and focuses on the key problems of the history of the Philippines. Describing the introductory chapters of the monograph, Yu. O. Levtonova writes: "Their purpose is to trace the "connection of times", to draw attention to those milestones in the pre-colonial and colonial history of the Philippines up to the XX century, events, plots and processes, without which it is impossible to understand and comprehend the further course of Philippine history, already in the XX century " (p. 7) Referring to the pre-colonial history of the archipelago (chapter I "Historical origins"), the author identified two stories related to the subsequent development of the country. The first story focuses on Sino-Philippine relations, which flourished in the 13th and first half of the 14th centuries, and the subsequent development of economic and cultural contacts with China. However, it is not entirely clear why Yu. O. Levtonova considers Chinese sea expeditions led by Zheng He to be pirate raids (p. 17). This was a demonstration of China's greatness, as well as a desire to expand foreign trade, since the latter along the mainland caravan routes significantly decreased in the first third of the 15th century. And one more (small) remark to the "Chinese" story: the official who wrote a book about the trade relations of medieval China with the countries of the South Seas was not called Chao Yu-kua (p.15), but Zhao Zhugua. The second story focuses on the development of the southern Philippines, where Islam was established in the 14th and 15th centuries, which largely determined the specifics of the development of the country.-

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The takeover of the Sudu Islands and Southwestern Mindanao marked the beginning of the current North-South standoff in the Philippines.

Sections on the socio-economic and political structure of pre-colonial Philippines, the nature of Balangai communities, the structure of Philippine society, culture and religion are clearly and concisely written. The only doubt is whether the level of development of the pre-colonial Philippines is exaggerated. Were there even "relatively centralized feudal and semi-feudal principalities" in Sulu and Mindanao, where the world religion came from (the rest of the island's population held animist beliefs) (p. 29)? Maybe pre-colonial Philippine society did not reach the state level, at best in some areas (Cebu, Manila area, South) reaching the stage of proto-state, or political? And then it is difficult to talk about the existence of private land ownership of a feudal nature (pp. 24, 35-36).

Analyzing the heritage of the Iberian cultural and historical 300-year-old colonial period (chapter II "Pax Hispanica in the Philippines (the second half of the XVI - end of the XIX century"), Yu. O. Levtonova notes that it "manifested itself in the processes of evolution of Philippine society during the formation of a new type of civilization, influencing through the development of social and political culture to create certain stereotypes of interaction between traditional and modern" (p. 38). The most important element of this legacy is the local elite, the formation and evolution of which is one of the key subjects of this chapter. The basis of the elite-the mainstay of the colonial regime-was the communal elite (principalia, or Caciques), turned into the grassroots link of local government. The Philippine aristocratic elite transformed into an official-bureaucratic layer, at the level of which "there was a close interaction of the introduced Spanish administrative culture and traditional stereotypes of social behavior" (p.44).

The process of Hispanization of Philippine society is considered by the author from the point of view of cultural synthesis, in which Christianization played a huge role, which caused cardinal changes in the spiritual world of the local population. Other cultural, educational, and artistic phenomena are also considered from this point of view. When analyzing the history of the Philippines at various stages, the author constantly turns to cultural phenomena, not limited to political or economic subjects.

In the 19th century, Yu. O. Levtonova concludes, "the main vector of the evolution of colonial society - towards national consolidation and the formation of a new all-Filipino elite" is gradually revealed (p.65). Another key theme of Philippine history was the anti-colonial revolution of 1896-1898, which had a profound impact on the mass consciousness of Filipinos in the twentieth century and continued to have it in the twenty-first century. This affected the influence of the ideas and ideals of the Revolution on public thought, on the programs of political parties and organizations, and on the colonial policy of the United States, which was determined taking into account the Revolution that had just died down.

The history of the 20th century proper opens with chapter III, " History of the Philippines in the First Half of the 20th Century (1901-1941)", which focuses on two inextricably linked problems: Americanization and modernization of colonial society and the response of this society itself. filippinization. The first meant introducing Filipinos "to the system of American social, cultural, spiritual values, and way of life" (p.109). The central role was taken by the policy of education: secularization, the introduction of the English language, free education in public elementary and secondary schools, the opening of the State University of the Philippines in Manila (1908), and scholarships for Filipinos to study in the United States. Filipinization resulted in the creation of the Philippine Civil Service, in which, from 1904, Filipino officials began to outnumber American officials. The staff was replenished with people from broader and more diverse social groups, but also Yu. O. Levtonova emphasizes that "the top layer of the local bureaucracy was formed entirely from the Philippine elite groups that preserved the traditions of the administrative culture of Caciquism inherited from the period of Spanish colonialism" (p.113). The most important part of Filipinization was political modernization - the creation of a liberal form of "colonial democracy": the practice of elections, the institution of political parties, the principle of separation of powers. The response of the Philippine elite was manifested in its willingness to cooperate with the colonial authorities,

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at the same time, using new political institutions to put pressure on the mother country in order to get more and more concessions.

There were certain changes in the social structure of the Philippines, although the situation in the agricultural sector, where up to 80% of the amateur population was employed (1918), remained virtually unchanged: landlords dominated there, relying "on an archaic system of paternalistic ties between landlords and peasants" (p.127). There was a block of large landowners and related entrepreneurs-merchants who performed comprador functions.

Radical nationalist movements and organizations received good coverage in the chapter. Among the most successful pages of the monograph is the section on the autonomy regime (1935-1941) and on the President of the autonomous Philippines, Manuel Quezon, leader of the Nationalist Party. In the author's description, Quezon appears as a charismatic personality, in which pragmatism and traditionalism, authoritarianism and populism coexisted. It is with him that the monograph connects the origins of authoritarian-dictatorial tendencies in the political life of the country (pp. 142-143). The chapter is filled with portraits of other characters in the political life of the Philippines at that time.

Chapter IV, "The Philippines during World War II," is a small, well-structured book that does not repeat the work of its predecessors. In my opinion, at least three subjects that seem to have been repeatedly touched upon in the literature on the history of Southeast Asia, but which are understood in a new way and presented by the author, certainly deserve attention.

First, it is the nature of collaboration in the Philippines. Yu. O. Levtonova did not limit herself to analyzing this phenomenon in general, but revealed it in relation to the Philippines through the figures of those politicians who agreed to cooperate with the Japanese. In addition to the fact that collaboration in the Philippines, as in general in the colonial countries of the East, was fundamentally different from the European one, in the Philippines, it seems that the leadership of the Quezon Nationalist Party decided in advance who should leave with the Americans and who should stay, so as not to lose control, even if under the control of the new colonialists. In other Southeast Asian countries, the Japanese had to deal either with the leaders of the left-wing nationalist movement (Burma, Indonesia), or with feudal and purely comprador figures, completely dependent on the colonial structure (Malaya, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos).

Secondly, the policy of the occupation authorities in the field of education and culture. Yu. O. Levtonova notes that the Japanese launched a campaign to use Japanese and Tagalog languages, trying to displace English. This led to an increase in the use of Tagalog, because despite all the efforts of the invaders, they did not have enough time and energy to introduce Japanese, which was alien to the population and difficult to master (pp. 165-166).1

Third, the Resistance Movement. Yu. O. Levtonova accurately notes the connection between the peculiarities of the anti-Japanese movement in the Philippines (lack of unity, extreme diversity, fragmentation) and political, cultural, social and historical traditions. While paying tribute to various organizations that waged armed and propaganda struggle, including those with the participation of American military personnel, the author quite rightly believes that the main burden of the struggle was borne and most effectively acted by the Communist-led People's Anti-Japanese Army (Hukbalahap) in the provinces of Central Luzon. At first glance, there are parallels with the struggle in Malaya, where a guerrilla army (the Anti-Japanese Army of the Peoples of Malaya), led by communists, was also created. Only the Philippines and Malaya turned out to be the countries of Southeast Asia where a serious armed struggle against the invaders unfolded. But the origins and nature of this struggle were radically different: if in Malaya almost only the Chinese population took part in it (more precisely, the part of it that followed the Chinese Communist Party of Malaya in its composition, which was guided by the Chinese Communists and their experience in armed resistance), then in the Philippines in the Tagalog regions of Central Luzon "guerrilla actions they often took on the traditional form of peasant movements directed not so much against the occupiers as against the local landlords" (p. 176), i.e. they were associated with traditions dating back to the 1920s and 1930s.

1 A largely similar pattern was observed in Indonesia, where the position of Malay (later the official Indonesian language) was strengthened, with the difference that in Indonesia this process was faster, while in the Philippines Tagalog (the language of Luzon Island) still cannot take the position that the Indonesian language has.

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My only comment on this brilliantly written chapter. The author writes: "In the history of World War II, the battle of Manila is on a par with Warsaw, Stalingrad, and Berlin" (p. 178). It is not clear what this is about. If we talk about a military operation, then Stalingrad and Berlin are not comparable not only with peripheral Manila, but also with Warsaw. If we are talking about destroyed cities and civilian casualties, then in the USSR there are dozens of such manilas, and 10 thousand. the loss of civilian lives in Manila is tragic, but hardly comparable to the scale of the loss of cities in our country in the battles on the Soviet - German front or with the fate of Dresden and Hiroshima.

Chapters V, " The Philippines in the Second Half of the Twentieth Century (1945-1965)", VI, "The Authoritarian Regime of F. Marcos (1965-1986): Rise, Stagnation, Collapse", and VII, "Post-authoritarian Development of the Philippines (1986-2000)" are the main threads of the author's thoughts on how the country moved from the traditional the transition of the political system to authoritarianism, and then, having overcome it (not without external support), once again plunged into the indestructible and reborn, like a Phoenix bird, this very system.

Yu. O. Levtonova sees the origins of this Philippine perpetuum mobile in decolonization (the Philippines gained independence from the United States on July 4, 1946), which lasted for years, during which the Americans did everything possible to "restore the dominant positions of the pre-war local ruling elite" (p.181). Acting by direct violence (disbanding Hukbalahap and persecuting its Huk fighters) and" patronizing " financially and propagandistically pleasing candidates for the first post-war presidents (m. Rojas, E. Quirino), the United States built decolonization on the basis of" special relations "of" senior "and" junior " partners: military bases, a trade agreement that is beneficial for Americans and Philippine compradors, and a pro-American foreign policy. But the author departs from the previous assessment (both domestic researchers and Filipino historians of the left-nationalist sense, as well as American radicals) to consider the country's independence a pure fiction, and evaluates it as "an event of great historical importance", even if it was "only the first step on the path of independent development" (p.187).

For the internal political development of the Philippines in the first post-war years, the central event, as Yu. O. Levtonova rightly believes, was the insurgency in Central Luzon under the leadership of the Communist Party of the Philippines. While reading the beautifully written pages of this story, I had, however, some disagreement with the provision on the "Stalinist attitudes" to armed struggle in all the Southeast Asian countries without exception (p. 189-190). This is hardly the case in the Philippines, and Yu. O. Levtonova herself writes (I think quite correctly) that the struggle took place in areas where landlords dominated, where there was traditional (since the revolution of 1896-1898) peasant egalitarian extremism, i.e., "the uprising in Luzon from the very beginning began to acquire a new meaning." a form of peasant war" (p. 189), and to look for the "hand of Moscow" in these conditions, as American authors do, is a clear stretch.

If for the period 1946-1953 the author considers the armed insurrection of the Huks (National Liberation Army) as a key problem, then in the analysis of 1954-1965 she focuses on the political system that was established during the 20 years of independence, more precisely, on those features that gave rise to the authoritarian regime of F. Markos. writes: "The liberal-democratic model that was established in the Philippines was a kind of elitist and so-called oligarchic democracy, when while formally preserving the attributes of a representative system, real power was concentrated in the hands of a socially closed ruling bloc" (p.199). And the Philippine model of liberal democracy (the only one in Southeast Asia) has demonstrated the failure of transplanting Western values to local soil.

Interesting sections are about the socio-economic changes of those years, first of all about the creation of import-substituting industries and the failure of the import substitution model, as well as about the campaign "Pilipino Muna" ("Filipinos first"), which combined the currents of "economic nationalism" and "cultural nationalism", united by anti - Americanism. It is very appropriate to include a section on the "Philippine Renaissance" of the 1950s and 1960s, which was based on the sometimes painful desire of literary and artistic figures to acquire a national identity, to emphasize the Filipino origin in their work, without relying on the pre-colonial civilizational layer.

The pre-storm atmosphere of the mid-1960s gradually develops into a structural crisis. This is perfectly described and analyzed by Yu. O. Levtonova. She sees the reason in

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the Philippines ' liberal democracy system was not compatible with the needs of a society whose pressing problems remained unresolved. And as a result, the demand for a strong, charismatic leader, which has been embedded in the Philippine political culture at least since the Revolution. To a certain extent, this was already Manuel Quezon, who, however, had to act in the conditions of a not too rigid, but still colonial regime. Such, the author believes, was Ramon Magsaysay, President of the Philippines (1954-1957). Yu. O. Levtonova departed from the previous assessments of this figure by domestic Filipinists (an anti-communist, pro-American who arrested major leaders of the Communist Party in 1950, and in 1953 defeated the Liberation Army using military, propaganda and social measures - the former Hukbalahap) and drew a more diverse image of this person. She rates Magsaysay as one of the most significant figures in Philippine history - a strong man with authoritarian traits. Under him, agrarian reforms began, the new national bourgeoisie became stronger, and the ideology of "economic nationalism"was developed. But after his death in a plane crash (1957), under very mediocre presidents (K. Garcia and D. Macapagal) the country was plunged into unresolved (and not solved by the elite) problems, which developed by the mid-1960s into a structural crisis, which the country tried to solve by calling on the help of an authoritarian regime.

The regime represented by F. Marcos and his wife Imelda was established for more than 20 years. Yu. O. Levtonova earlier, in the book" The Evolution of the political system of the modern Philippines " (1985), gave her assessment of both the regime and its creator, emphasizing the complexity, inconsistency and, in a certain sense, the tragedy of this figure. And now, after a quarter of a century, it has remained true to this assessment. This is a truly scientific approach, especially when the deposed (and now deceased) dictator is accused by Philippine science of being guided "in all his actions exclusively by hypertrophied ambition for power, vanity and an exorbitant thirst for wealth" (p.242).

According to the author, the Philippines ' transition to authoritarianism at the turn of the 1960s and 1970s was the only option for stabilizing a society torn apart by contradictions: the revival of the left - wing movement, including the armed one, conflicts between oligarchic clans, the threat to the country's territorial integrity from Muslim separatism in the South, and the incompleteness of the capitalist transformation of the economy.

In general, the chapter devoted to F. Marcos, in my opinion, is the best section of the monograph. It is written enthusiastically, which does not interfere with strict analysis and careful selection of subjects. After briefly describing the period of 1965-1972, Yu. O. Levtonova focused on the era of the establishment of the authoritarian Marcos regime proper, its development and crisis. In the center is the evolution of the" new society "(1972-1981), which the author describes as" a regime of personal power with a civil form of government " (p.265). Although the army became one of the main components of the political system established by Marcos, the "new society" (unlike similar structures in Southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia and Burma) ultimately remained within the framework of a civilian authoritarian regime. Another specific feature of this regime is its relative liberality, which was explained, according to Yu. O. Levtonova, by the existence of a deep constitutional tradition in the upper strata of society, which forced both the government and the opposition to take care of justifying the legitimacy or illegitimacy of certain actions. It focuses on such a characteristic of the "new society" as an appeal to the ideological heritage of the Revolution and the so-called barangay democracy, i.e., to communal values.

Yu. O. Levtonova clearly formulates her vision of the failure that befell the "new society", and with it its creator: the Philippine political culture with its democratic and constitutional traditions prevented the full implementation of statist tendencies and the consolidation of authoritarianism (p.297). In addition, the nouveau riches around the Marcos couple repeated the behavioral stereotypes of the old oligarchy: corruption, the predominance of group and personal interests, factionalism, and political shortsightedness.

The author, it seems to me, writes with some regret (if not with sympathy) about the tragic fate of a bright leader. Marcos ' assets include the beginning of a real modernization of the economy, banking reform, agrarian reforms, independence and effectiveness of foreign policy (first of all, a departure from unilateral pro-Americanism). According to the author, the tragedy of Marcos was that he could not "overcome the duality between innovation and traditionalism" (p. 300) and, starting as a pragmatist and reformer with perestroika

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He gradually returned to the usual image and behavior of traditional politicians, mired in profit, favoritism, and luxury. Imelda Marcos, of course, played a significant role in this rebirth.

The internal disintegration of the regime, the activities of the opposition, the ambiguous position of the United States in relation to Marcos, who was losing his support - all this was concentrated and materialized in the " EDSA revolution "(February 22-25, 1986), when the mass of the population of Manila and its suburbs came to the 20-kilometer Epifanio de los Santos Street, and without shedding blood, the regime fell Yu. O. Levtonova does not consider the February 1986 events a revolution, and I completely agree with her. In form, it was a fiesta-carnival-holiday (V. V. Sumsky wrote about this perfectly in his two-volume "Fiesta of Filipin", Moscow, 2003), and in fact "transition (more precisely, return) from authoritarianism to liberal democracy... at the level of regrouping forces in the same social environment - the national Philippine elite " (p. 358). Although Yu. O. Levtonova accepts the thesis of active nonviolence, which ensured the success of the "EDSA revolution", she, unlike most Philippine, Western and domestic colleagues, treats it with restraint, believing that the military was preparing to overthrow Marcos with the consent of the United States, and that the Catholic Church led by Cardinal X played a decisive role. Sinom, and most importantly, "nonviolence as a cultural and socio-psychological phenomenon is not at all characteristic of the historical tradition and political culture of the Philippines" (p.363). I would ask the question: what country is this phenomenon typical for, apart from its one-time manifestations (like the EMSA event)?

Chapter V, which crowns the monograph, in addition to analyzing the "EDS Revolution" provides a meaningful and, I would say, somewhat sad picture of Philippine history at the end of the XX century. It seems that the country is moving in a vicious circle of unresolved problems, continuous, not very productive searches, impossibility (or unwillingness?) elites break out of this circle. Without dwelling on the twists and turns of the country's political life, analyzed with great knowledge and thoroughness by the author, I note that the euphoria of the first months (maybe even days) of the carnival "EDSA revolution" quickly passed, and it turned out that the troubles are connected not so much with the malice of dictator Marcos and the defiant behavior of his wife, but with the burden of unresolved social the new society seems to have coped even better than the new democracy of President Corazon Aquino, the widow of a mysteriously murdered opponent of Marcos, who came to power on a wave of anti-Marcos sentiment. During the presidency of K. Aquino (1986-1992) the former elite returned to power, and the "new democracy" turned out to be only a kind of elite oligarchic democracy, unable to adequately respond to the political, economic, and social challenges of the turn of the 1980s and 1990s. Traditional values and behavioral stereotypes returned to their circles, which led to the curtailment of reforms, the strengthening of the economy, and the strengthening of the economy. socio-economic contradictions and political conflicts.

Already under President Fidel Ramos (1992-1998), the pendulum swung in the direction of strengthening the role of the state, order and discipline. Ramos '"working democracy" achieved some success in the economy, expanded the social base of the regime, weakened the extremist opposition, managed to start a peaceful settlement of the problem of the Muslim South and develop a new concept of foreign policy.

But even under the" strongman " Ramos, the political system remained the same, and the general himself did not dare to run for a second term, facing powerful opposition-from the church to close associates who were afraid of the emergence of a new Marcos.

As a result, the 1998 election was won by former film actor Joseph Estrada, who became vice president under Ramos. And the Philippine story at the end of the century took on a farcical character. Populism - in other words, impossible promises in advance (Estrada promised the poor that he would lift them out of poverty) - and incompetence, combined with the global economic crisis of 1997-1998, led to economic collapse and a political crisis. The situation in the South has become more complicated, and the left-wing insurgent movement has revived. With the support of the army, a crowd of millions once again came out to EDS. Although, as Yu. O. Levtonova writes, "the power of the people-2 revolution had only an external resemblance to the power of the people-1 revolution" (p. 423), it still seems to me that both "revolutions" are of the same type: the puppet masters pulled the strings of the multi-million-strong mass of the capital region (although, probably,the majority of the population of the city was not in 1986, there was more sincerity and faith in this mass than on January 16, 2001).

page 194

In the" Conclusion " - one of the best parts of the monograph (pp. 427-431) - Yu.O. Levtonova very successfully acts as not only a historian, but also a political scientist with a futurological bias. Retrospectively assessing the history of the Philippines in the twentieth century, especially at the junction with the twenty-first century, she makes a disappointing conclusion: "In the third millennium, the Philippines entered a state of crisis of power, a change in top leadership, economic uncertainty, political tension and aggravation of social contradictions. The main factor of negative impact on social development is the growing discrepancy between the Philippine political system, in which traditional political and cultural stereotypes are firmly rooted, and the needs and challenges of our time" (p.428). In addition, the author believes that there are no large-scale leaders in the Philippines who can overcome traditionalism and turn the country towards political and economic modernization. "Therefore, in the near future, we can hardly expect rapid and radical changes in the social development of the Philippines, stabilization, elimination of the unpredictability and chaotic nature of the political process" (p.431).

This beautiful book, written in good literary language, contains reflections that apply not only to the Philippines. In a word: "For whom does the bell ring?"

In conclusion, two thoughts inspired by reading - literally in one sitting - the book of Yu. O. Levtonova.

My first thought. Isn't the lack of a pre-colonial civilizational-state foundation of a society that has been forcibly plunged into an alien system of values and connections due to the feverishness and not very successful resolution of the problems facing the Philippines? No other Southeast Asian country has experienced anything like this. And Latin America - in the colonial Spanish era, a kind of model for the Philippines-in search of its identity could rely not only on the revolutions of the first decades of the XIX century, but also on the historical memory of the existence of the Inca, Aztec and Maya states.

Second thought. And is it really important for the mass of the population of the Philippines to grow GDP or what is called modernization (by the way, both are present in the life of the country)? The current development scenario (or lack thereof) allows the country to stay afloat, and the United States will always help a loyal and proven satellite.


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