Discipline: Literature, History
In order to avoid misunderstanding, let me begin with the definition of terms used in this brief article. The term "literature" may be viewed from its generic or specific sense. From its generic sense, it is a branch of fine art which depicts beauty by means of both the spoken and the written word. From this sense only those written and spoken beautifully, and especially those only of lasting and universal appeal, may be considered as literature. In this sense we speak of the Greek literature, the French literature, the German literature, the English literature, the Spanish literature, the Japanese literature, the. American literature, and the Italian literature. Literature, however, may be used broadly to mean all works of man which use language as a means to express thoughts and ideas. From this conception, literature includes not only those beautifully written and spoken but also the ordinary treatises on governments, science, languages, religion, and other branches of human knowledge. In this article we shall take the meaning of literature from the latter viewpoint, and only those written by Filipinos and by foreign writers about the Philippines.