Gonzalez hosted the first University of the Philippines writer's workshop with a group who would soon form the Ravens. Gonzalez continued to teach when he returned to California in the s, serving as a visiting professor at the University of California at Santa Barbara; professor M Gonzales Essay Some travelers come, plant themselves, and grow—some do not, either because they do not really plant, or because, like the corrupt officials in A Season of Grace who take buri mats from Sabel in the beginning and Clara at the end, they are flagrant robbers.
Those qualities which do spur growth Gonzalez wants to identify as the spine of Philippine character, the essence of a genuinely native past. They show most clearly, though certainly not without a great deal of tarnish, in the generosity, patience, and nobility of the Philippine peasant.
The coconut becomes a mythic sign as it links the qualities of peasant life and the historical origins of Philippine society to its own immemorial travel and endurance of the salty sea. In many quarters of the Southeast Asian world the coconut is, of course, an already sacred sign; what Gonzalez adds to it is a new, pointed historicity.
He uses it, that is, to reshape subtly, but significantly, an old story; and thus the fruit of the palm goes beyond even its more significant meanings, to say nothing of the way it surpasses its other familiar function as a sign of the carefree, exotic tropics, of Coconut Joes and luscious complexions.
In a recent lecture at the University of Hawaii, Gonzalez speculated that in terms of the literary imagination the Comic Rhythm might be the best way for the Third World to deal with the historical circumstances of imperialism; for the Comic Rhythm celebrates community, integration, the overcoming of fragmenting alien spirits.
A Season of Grace leaves the Rudas inclining toward the Tragic Rhythm, toward loneliness and disintegration. The poor folk, for all their faults and the often desperate straits of their lives, incline toward the comic. Go on, though. It is one of the most steady, hopeful rhythms in Third World literature. The native culture will survive, it seems to say, and by an inner strength that antedates colonialism. III Until some enlightened U. Coincidentally—or maybe not—the stories also fall roughly in chronological order.
We find in due course a way of ordering the experience we go through as, indeed, others do , and somehow come to understanding Reality as we live it—until swamped once more by fresh confusions and perplexities. As she works with buri, so Gonzalez the writer can be seen working words, weaving on the warp and woof of myth and detail stories which declare to his people that there is indeed some unique past, something worth remembering.
His father is a salesman. It is now rather easy to see things in this light. Padua quits his job, as well as his nighttime study of law, and as the story ends is handing his father a folder of his short stories and poems. Father and I had changed places. He learned to play the violin and made his own guitars by hand.
For college, he attended National University at Manila, Philippines, but did not finish his degree. Gonzalez published his first essay in the Philippine Graphic and his first poem was published in Would you like me to? RJB I want to get at how you, as a craftsman, move a story forward. NVMG Well, in the first place, a story is a combination of many elements. But what it does have, when you put it down, is a subject which, by definition—and I think this is shared by many—answers the question of what the story is about.
The answer to that is a word expressive of a moral idea—like love, courage, devotion, and so Access options available:. Gonzalez received an honorary doctorate from the University of the Philippines in and became its first international writer in residence in He served as the Regents Professor at the University of California at Los Angeles and continued to receive distinctions such as the National Artist Award for Literature in and the Centennial Award for Literature in He passed away on November 28, , due to kidney complications.
He was Gonzalez is remembered as an innovative writer, a dedicated and humble worker and an honest witty friend. Epilogue In November 18, , just a few days from the N.
A Philippine village, in fact, is called by a name that suggests not settlement, but journey: it is barangay, the name of a coconut-tough little boat on which many arrived from Polynesia, Malaysia, Micronesia, China, the Indian subcontinent. Short Story Awards ceremony on campus, the Gonzalez residence caught fire.
RJB We could begin with your experience as a teacher of creative writing. It is the story of a Filipino in the world.
The answer to that is a word expressive of a moral idea—like love, courage, devotion, and so
Unfortunately, most of the copies were destroyed when the Japanese occupied the Philippines during the war.
For a multitude of historical, commercial, and geothermal reasons the coconut has long been associated with the Islands.
Their life is hard. He served as the Regents Professor at the University of California at Los Angeles and continued to receive distinctions such as the National Artist Award for Literature in and the Centennial Award for Literature in