The Theological Squabble of Duterte Against the Catholic Church: Discourse Analysis of Duterte’s God-Talk Based in the Verses Found on Online News
This paper is an attempt to provide a discourse analysis of President Rodrigo Duterte’s controversial statements and public pronouncements about God, the Catholic Church and its clergy, and Christian teachings based on online news and similar websites. Using critical discourse analysis grounded in Michel Foucault’s (1980) theory of knowledge/power nexus, the present paper is a modest attempt to come up with a systematic account of Duterte’s “theological” musings based on his random extemporized diatribes against God and Christian religion. Reconstructing Duterte’s “theology” does not mean assessing it from the mainstream religious point of view but rather bringing into light the theological tenets of Duterte’s concept of God and foregrounding them in the context of our predominantly Christian culture. This study wants primarily to understand what are the objectives that these performative pronouncements seek to achieve politically, and what interests they serve based on Foucault’s (1980) analysis of “regime of truth.”
The Philippines’s experience with its last foreign occupant, the US, resulted in an entire package of fraught “special relations” that, coupled with the country’s problematic responses to the challenges of self-government, ultimately led to a global dispersal of the population, effectively turning the Philippines into the major Asian nation arguably most reliant on its citizens’ overseas remittances. This paper takes the position that diasporic Filipinos, for a variety of reasons starting with the effectiveness of maintaining unintrusive presences in alien cultures (including the acceptance of menial positions), have possibly developed and have enabled others to perceive them as silent and discreet figures once they step into the circuits of globalized labor exchanges. Just as overseas Filipino characters have started being acknowledged in non-Philippine overseas film productions, their presences therein partake of this self-effacing configuration of global citizenship.