Miguel Syjuco Quotes.
It kills me how these days everyone has clinical justification for their strangeness.
ClichГ©s remind and reassure us that we’re not alone, that others have trod this ground long ago.
Love and honesty don’t mix.
Angry men have little to live for when their rage becomes ineffective.
I surprise myself that I’m not dead in the gutter somewhere, surprised that I haven’t given up.
Freedom is the only thing we must demand in life, for all other good things stem from it
You canвЂ™t bring an unwritten place to life without losing something substantial. Manila is the cradle, the graveyard, the memory. The Mecca, the Cathedral, the bordello. The shopping mall, the urinal, the discotheque. IвЂ™m hardly speaking in metaphor. ItвЂ™s the most impermeable of cities. How does one convey all that?
I want to write a book that makes people debate, and makes people think, interact with each other and exchange ideas… I write because I’m engaged in this big conversation.
When I was young, I spent my days and nights trying to impress future generations. I spent them. They’re gone. All because I was deathly afraid of being forgotten. And then came the regret. The worst things of all worst things.
Angst is not the human condition, itвЂ™s the purgatory between what we have and what we want but canвЂ™t get.
I have no illusions that my work can rouse the masses to create change, because literature simply doesn’t have that power anymore in my country, if it does anywhere. But I do hope that it can be read by those who are in positions to create change, or that it can at least be part of that dialogue.
The Miguel Syjuco character is not me. I wanted him to represent my own fears and frustrations and guilt, my own worst tendencies and my optimistic expectations. He’s a cautionary tale for me. But he’s also an examination of the darkest things that haunt me as a person.
I grew up with a very privileged background. My father served as one of the cabinet ministers in Arroyo’s government, and he’s been a congressman for many years, and he’s running again.
Sometimes one waits too long for the perfect moment before snapping the picture. You never realize that you needed was to change perspective.
I’m home and safe and filled with the comfort of being somewhere I’ve already been. The ruckus of homecoming is brutally enjoyable and everyone makes me feel like a champion. And all I had to do was stay away long enough.
Being remembered is all anyone can ask from a lost love.
I love my homeland, but it’s an absurd country. Politics in the Philippines is like spectator sports!
History is changed by martyrs who tell the truth.
What I do know is that writing is the thing I am best at, and I don’t have the stomach, the ability, the strength or the courage to enter the political arena. And I think writing can be a political act, if only to let those people accountable know they are being watched. Literature can be a conscience.
The Philippines, it has a politics of patronage. Family and favors, in addition to the old cliche of guns, goons and gold, really do still hold a lot of sway.
I look at western literature and especially North American literature, and I feel like it gets bogged down so much with all of that, with domestic stories and relationships and a woman dealing with the loss of her husband.
If our greatest fear is to sink away alone and unremembered, the brutality that time will inflict upon each of us will always run stronger than any river’s murky waves.
The slaves of today will become the tyrants of tomorrow–the proletariat overthrows the hegemon to become the hegemon itself, only to be eventually overthrown by a proto-hegemon that will in turn lose its position. It is this dizzying cycle that keeps humanity chasing the tail it lost millennia ago
Fiction is a very powerful tool for teaching history. The Philippines was the first Iraq, the first Vietnam, the first Afghanistan, in the sense that it was the United States initial or baptismal experience in nation-building.
When you live in the Philippines or a country like that, you develop something of a very thick skin because you’re confronted every day with all of the problems all around you.
Literature is an ethical leap. It is a moral decision. A perilous exercise in constant failure. Literature should have grievances, because there are so many grievances in the world.
To be an honest writer, you have to be away from home, and totally alone in life.
Touching on universality is an important part of effective storytelling, but the problem with cliches is that they are tired and dull. And that’s where writers must try to be artful.
There is that potential of the expats coming back to the Philippines. But sadly they are no opportunities, no incentive for them to come back home. Successive governments have, in fact, been training them to export them rather than working on the economy to welcome them home.
The immigrant experience in ‘Ilustrado’ was only a small part of what I intended to be a broader look at the Filipino experience, even if that broader look was itself merely a specific perspective.
Postmodernism was a reaction to modernism. Where modernism was about objectivity, postmodernism was about subjectivity. Where modernism sought a singular truth, postmodernism sought the multiplicity of truths.
I don’t believe in nationalism. I think it’s a bunch of slogans. It’s a bunch of poor attempts at creating pride. My problem with nationalism is that it becomes exclusionary. We start to exclude people.
With ‘Ilustrado,’ I set out to change the way we read literature, and I think I failed spectacularly. In fact, I know I failed. In reaching further than I could, I may not have produced a life- or literature-changing book, but I did produce one I am proud of.
I dont see myself as any different from all the other Filipinos who have gone abroad looking for opportunity, to be a nurse, a labourer, a maid or a prostitute.
I have to believe that literature can effect change; otherwise, I would have no purpose in my life and would have wasted four years on Ilustrado.
I have to believe that literature can effect change; otherwise, I would have no purpose in my life and would have wasted four years on ‘Ilustrado.’
I don’t see myself as any different from all the other Filipinos who have gone abroad looking for opportunity, to be a nurse, a labourer, a maid or a prostitute.
I read a blog about this young filmmaker in the Philippines who made a short film, and one of the characters in the film reads my novel and then starts discussing the novel with someone. The idea that my book can inspire another artist and be part of that other artist’s work… that’s the reason I write.
I’ve learned that I have to be happy with creating discussion and debate and that I shouldn’t be trying to write a book that appeals to the consensus.
We referenced fictional characters as if they were people to learn from. As if real-life people were too nebulous, too private and unreal for us to understand.
Fiction is a very powerful tool for teaching history. The Philippines was the first Iraq, the first Vietnam, the first Afghanistan, in the sense that it was the United States’ initial or baptismal experience in nation-building.