Pasyon and Holy Week: A Study of Music, Acculturation, and Local Catholicism in the Philippines

Chongson, Mary Arlene Pe (2000) Pasyon and Holy Week: A Study of Music, Acculturation, and Local Catholicism in the Philippines. Doctoral thesis, University of Texas at Austin.

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The Pasyon is a widely celebrated annual ritual in contemporary Catholic culture of the Philippines. It involves communal chanting of a narrative poem that focuses on the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. In this study of music and ritual, I analyze the formal features that constitute the singing styles of the pasyon and the meanings in which they are grounded. I examine the intricate webbing and sometimes converging patterns of tension and resolution in traditional and contemporary religious practices as displayed in the pasyon. I show how local values shape, define, and control actions and activities of the event. The main thesis of this dissertation is that the pasyon is an expression of popular religiosity, or more specifically, local Catholicism. Chapter One provides an introduction to the pasyon and a survey of research work undertaken on the subject. Chapter Two addresses the relationship between the pasyon and other types of Holy Week celebration, as well as how those rites account for the structural density of the entire celebration. Chapter Three gives ethnographic expositions of the pasyon in three performance settings: one performed in an urban shopping center, another in a poor area in a cosmopolitan city, and the third in a small, provincial town. The objective is not comparative, but rather to show the range of variability and the significance of pasyon performances in local contexts. Chapter Four provides analyses of text and music, exploring the effect of musical behavior and cultural preferences on major features such as melodic character and development, phrase and poetic framework, and even the element of play. Chapter Five examines how social values are essential in the process of the creative construction of the pasyon. The last chapter investigates how the pasyon relates to the formation of contemporary Filipino identity and the maintenance of Christian Philippine society.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Catholicism, cultural performance, cultural performance criticism, Holy Week, Lent, music, pasyon, rites and rituals
Depositing User: Repo Admin
Date Deposited: 12 May 2017 14:57
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2017 08:12

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