Philippines: The Rice Doll of Asia

“An understanding is perhaps better than an alliance, which may stereotype arrangements which cannot be regarded as permanent in view of the changing circumstances from day to day.”
Edward Grey


Stereotypes are usual generalizations attributed to a certain group of people or a country defined by the society. Stereotypes can be both positive and negative which can make a big difference on the image of a certain country. People often attach their stereotypes to a certain idea based from their own experiences, what the society told them or what information they have read.

The map shows the common stereotypes of Americans to other nations. The map shows a great deal of interest for me because it is not very often that stereotype-maps are made to convey information about the generalizations attributed to different countries. As mentioned above, not all stereotypes convey positive remarks and ideas toward a certain country. The map illustrates a lot of negative remarks on other countries but I’d rather focus on the stereotype attributed to the Philippines.

Our country is tagged as the Rice Doll of Asia in the map. For many people, the concept of the rice doll itself is a very complicated topic but I’d like to explain it in simple words. The Philippines is an agricultural country which focuses on the production of its main agricultural product, rice. It is a fundamental commodity to our culture -we love eating rice more than any other food. For others, it can already be considered our staple food. We can eat almost everything with rice. We eat rice during breakfast and until dinner. Our enthusiasm and the close relationship of rice to our culture is the most probable reason why our country was tagged as the rice doll of Asia.

The target audience of the map is the general public specifically the American people. Their country is shown as the civilized world in the map. My impression is that the map wants to show the typical view of the American people about other countries. Just by merely looking at the map and the colors used, the map influences the map reader to think about positive stereotypes. But by closely looking at the words used, these words are somehow derogatory to other people.

Responsible mapping should always be practiced when producing maps because maps convey a great deal of information and it is a very powerful tool of communication. This particular map showed the stereotypes of Americans with respect to other nations but carefulness should always be done.



3 comments on “Philippines: The Rice Doll of Asia

  1. WOW! I don’t know who made the map, but please understand that it is a joke. If anything, it is a satire against Americans by Americans.

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