By Robin Jeffrey
Advent / Robin Jeffrey --
The Philippines / Alfred W. McCoy --
India / Robin Jeffrey --
Indonesia / Anthony Reid --
Vietnam / David Marr --
Malaya / Lee Kam Hing --
end / D.A. Low.
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Every Manila Spaniard had a share in the China commerce, but it was the Spanish religious orders that dominated the galleon trade. Although their profits were considerable, the Spanish missions - unlike the British and Dutch East India companies - did not remit their surpluses to Spain but instead kept them in Manila to finance local charities and the evangelisation of eastern Asia, later enabling them to make a major contribution to the growth of export agriculture in the nineteenth century. 9 Absorbed in the easy profits of the trans-Pacific galleon trade, the Spanish colony abandoned provincial trade to Chinese, Filipino and half-caste entrepreneurs until the latter half of the nineteenth century.
These close ties survive because they serve the interests of the ruling Filipino elite. Many are bound to the United States through export trading relationships or joint ventures with American multinational firms, and most remain comfortable with the bi-national, Phil-American cultural identity implanted during the half-century of US colonial rule. Reflecting the highly articulated class divisions within Philippine society, there have emerged over the past century, two kinds of nationalism - the compromised, bi-national identity of the elite and the more profound, almost religious nationalism of the peasantry.
Fragmented into warring microstates and scattered across 1700 km of ocean, the Philippine archipelago fell easy victim to a handful of Spanish conquistadores and missionaries who crossed the Pacific Ocean in the 1560s and laid claim to the islands in the name of their king. The economic skills of the Philippine microstates, called baran- gays, were far in advance of their statecraft. Instead of decaying temples and ruined palaces, the pre·Hispanic Philippines has left an archaeological harvest of trade pottery, Ming and Siamese porcelains, so rich that today the fields in some regions seem almost sown with fragments of Chinese plates and jars.
Asia—The Winning of Independence by Robin Jeffrey