Background: The informant is a 59 year old woman. She was born in Pampanga, Philippines and moved to Los Angeles when she was 29 yearsold. The informant still frequently speaks to her family and occasionally visits her family in the Philippines. The informant grew up as Catholic in the Philippines, converting to evangelical Christianity during her time in Los Angeles. She was exposed to the tradition when living in the Philippines.
Context: The context was during Easter, the informant brought up how he was raised. He seemed surprised at how it was different in America.
EM: For the Holy Week, you know Holy Week? It’s when Jesus, you know, suffered and died. We celebrate it for a week. Let’s say, you know, let’s say, for the whole week, there’s no work for the whole week. No class, no school, no work for the whole week.
Me: In the Philippines?
EM: In the Philippines. Not here. You know, all people work still, right? That’s what I remember: we don’t work. When I was there, still there, we don’t work the whole week, especially student, it was kind of like that.
Informant: She grew up with no work being normalized during Holy Week. When she came to America, it was extremely different from what she had previously experienced, and it took some adjusting to see everyone still working during the Holy Week.
Mine: It’s interesting to see how the same traditions are represented differently depending on the geographic location, revealing that, though the world is becoming more globalized due to the rise of the internet, there still remains a large amount of folklore tied to the physical location. In the Philippines, not working was considered the baseline expectation during the Holy week; in America, I have never heard of someone taking the Holy Week off work or other activities. Even Easter is not even afforded a three day weekend in most circumstances. The change in tradition is likely due to a different breakdown of religions in the two countries. In the Philippines, where the population is more homogenous, mostly everyone is going to be following the same faith. However, in America, pushing to have the Holy Week off work would reveal a government preference towards religion, leaving the choice to the individual. However, it could be seen as uncomfortable if nobody else is taking the time off work. Therefore, folklore can still be affected by social context, and extremely by who the group is made up with (is the group homogeneous or heterogeneous?) and where the physical location is.