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''Pinoy'' ( ) is a common informal
self-reference Self-reference occurs in natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxie ...
used by
Filipinos Filipinos ( fil, Mga Pilipino) are the people who are citizens of or native to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Re ...

Filipinos
to refer to citizens of the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
and their culture as well as to
overseas Filipinos An overseas Filipino ( fil, Pilipino sa ibayong-dagat) is a person of full or partial Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially the ...
in the Filipino diaspora. A Pinoy with a mix of foreign ancestry is often informally called ''
Tisoy In the Philippines, Filipino Mestizo ( es, mestizo (masculine) / mestiza (feminine); Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially t ...
'', a shortened word for ''
Mestizo (; ; fem. ) is a racial classification used to refer to a person of a combined Ethnic groups in Europe, European and Indigenous peoples of the Americas, Indigenous American ancestry. The term was used as an ethnic/racial category for mixed-ra ...

Mestizo
''. Many Filipinos refer to themselves as ''Pinoy'', sometimes the feminine ''Pinay'' ( ), instead of the standard term ''Filipino''. ''Filipino'' is the widespread formal word used to call a citizen of the Philippines. ''Pinoy'' is formed by taking the last four letters of ''Filipino'' and adding the diminutive suffix -y in the
Tagalog language Tagalog (, ; ; Baybayin (, ''pre-kudlit'': , ''virama-krus-kudlit'': , ''virama-pamudpod'': ; also formerly commonly incorrectly known as alibata) is a Philippine script. The script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a di ...
(the suffix is commonly used in Filipino nicknames: e.g. "Noynoy" or "Kokoy" or "Toytoy"). ''Pinoy'' was used for
self-identification One's self-concept (also called self-construction, self-identity, self-perspective or self-structure) is a collection of belief A belief is an attitude Attitude may refer to: Philosophy and psychology * Attitude (psychology) In psyc ...
by the first wave of Filipinos going to the continental United States before
World War II World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
and has been used both in a pejorative sense and as a term of endearment, similar to ''
Desi Desi (; ) is a word used to describe the people, cultures, and products of the Indian subcontinent and their diaspora A diaspora ( ) is a scattered population whose origin Origin(s) or The Origin may refer to: Arts, entertainment, an ...

Desi
''. ''Pinoy'' was created to differentiate the experiences of those immigrating to the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
, but is now a slang term used to refer to all people of Filipino descent. "Pinoy music" impacted the socio-political climate of the 1970s and was employed by both Philippine president
Ferdinand Marcos Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos Sr. (, September 11, 1917 – September 28, 1989) was a Filipino politician and lawyer who was the 10th president of the Philippines The president of the Philippines ( fil, Pangulo ng Pilipinas, sometime ...
and the
People Power Revolution The People Power Revolution, also known as the EDSA Revolution or the February Revolution, was a series of popular demonstrations in the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially the Republic of the ...
that overthrew his regime. Recent mainstream usages tend to center on entertainment (''
Pinoy Big Brother ''Pinoy Big Brother'', more popularly known by its abbreviated title ''PBB'', is the Philippine version of the '' Big Brother'' reality game show franchise. The word ''Pinoy ''Pinoy'' ( ) is a common informal Endonym and exonym, self-refere ...
'') that can be watched on Pinoy Tambayan and music (''
Pinoy Idol ''Pinoy Idol'' is a 2008 Philippine television Interactive television, interactive Reality television, reality-based singing competition show broadcast by GMA Network. Created and developed by FremantleMedia and 19 Entertainment, the program i ...
''), which have played a significant role in developing national and cultural identity.


Origins

The term ''Pinoy'' was coined by expatriate
Filipino Americans Filipino Americans ( fil, Mga Pilipinong Amerikano) are Americans of Filipinos, Filipino ancestry. Filipinos in North America were first documented in the 16th century and other small settlements beginning in the 18th century. Mass migration did ...
during the 1920s and was later adopted by Filipinos in the Philippines. According to historian
Dawn Mabalon Dawn Bohulano Mabalon (August 17, 1972 – August 10, 2018) was an American academic who worked on documenting the history of Filipino Americans. Mabalon was born in Stockton, and earned her doctoral degree from Stanford University; she later t ...
, the historical use has been to refer to Filipinos born or living in the United States and has been in constant use since the 1920s. She adds that it was reclaimed and politicized by "Filipina/o American activists and artists in the FilAm movements of the 1960s/1970s".


Earliest usages

The earliest known usages of ''Pinoy''/''Pinay'' in magazines and newspapers date to the 1920s include taking on social issues facing Pinoy, casual mentions of Pinoys at events, while some are advertisements from
Hawaii Hawaii ( ; haw, Hawaii or ) is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspape ...

Hawaii
from Filipinos themselves. The following are the more notable earliest usages:


United States

In the United States, the earliest published usage known is a ''Philippine Republic'' article written in January 1924 by Dr. J. Juliano, a member of the faculty of the Schurz school in Chicago – "Why does a Pinoy take it as an insult to be taken for a
Shinto Shinto () is a religion which originated in Japan. Classified as an East Asian religions, East Asian religion by Religious studies, scholars of religion, its practitioners often regard it as Japan's indigenous religion and as a nature religion. ...

Shinto
ist or a
Confucian Confucianism, also known as Ruism, is a system of thought and behavior originating in ancient China The earliest known written records of the history of China date from as early as 1250 BC, from the Shang dynasty (c. 1600–1046 BC ...
?" and "What should a Pinoy do if he is addressed as a
Chinese Chinese can refer to: * Something related to China China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. It is the List of countries and dependencies by population, world's most populous country, with a populat ...

Chinese
or a
Jap ''Jap'' is an English abbreviation of the word "Japanese people, Japanese". Today, it is generally regarded as an list of ethnic slurs, ethnic slur, although English-speaking countries differ in the degree to which they consider the term offens ...
?" According to the late Filipino-American historian Dawn Bohulano Mabalon, another early attestation of the terms "Pinoy" and "Pinay" was in a 1926 issue of the ''Filipino Student Bulletin''. The article that featured the terms is titled "Filipino Women in U.S. Excel in Their Courses: Invade Business, Politics."Dawn Mabalon, Little Manila is in the Heart (Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2013), 20, 37.


Philippines

In the Philippines, the earliest published usage known is from December 1926, in ''History of the Philippine Press'', which briefly mentions a weekly Spanish-
Visayan Visayans (Visayan Visayans ( Visayan: ''Mga Bisaya'', ) or Visayan people, are a Philippine ethnolinguistic group native to the whole Visayas The Visayas ( ), or the Visayan Islands (Bisayan languages, Visayan: ''Kabisay-an'', ; tl, Kabis ...
-English publication called ''Pinoy'' based in
Capiz Capiz, officially the Province of Capiz (Capiznon Capiznon or Capiceño is an Austronesian language, Austronesian regional language spoken in Western Visayas in the Philippines. Capiznon is concentrated in the province of Capiz in the northeast ...
and published by the Pinoy Publishing Company., ''Pinoy''’s publication date is December 27, 1926. The publisher was Pinoy Publishing Company. Other than that, there's no further information. In 1930, the
Manila Manila ( , ; fil, Maynila, ), officially the City of Manila ( fil, Lungsod ng Maynila, ), is the capital Capital most commonly refers to: * Capital letter Letter case (or just case) is the distinction between the letters that are ...

Manila
-based magazine ''Khaki and Red: The Official Organ of the Constabulary and Police'' printed an article about street gangs stating "another is the 'Kapatiran' gang of Intramuros, composed of patrons of pools rooms who banded together to 'protect pinoys' from the abusive American soldados."


Motivations

The desire to self-identify can likely be attributed to the diverse and independent history of the archipelagic country – comprising 7,107 islands in the western
Pacific Ocean The Pacific Ocean is the largest and deepest of Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun and the only astronomical object known to harbour and support life. 29.2% of Earth's surface is land consisting of continents and islands. ...

Pacific Ocean
– which trace back 30,000 years before being colonized by
Spain , image_flag = Bandera de España.svg , image_coat = Escudo de España (mazonado).svg , national_motto = , national_anthem = , image_map = , map_caption = , image_map2 ...

Spain
in the 16th century and later occupied by the
United States The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country Continental United States, primarily located in North America. It consists of 50 U.S. state, states, a Washington, D.C., ...

United States
, which led to the outbreak of the Philippine–American War (1899–1902). The
Commonwealth of the Philippines The Commonwealth of the Philippines ( es, Commonwealth de Filipinas or ''Mancomunidad de Filipinas''; tl, Kómonwélt ng Pilipinas or ''Malasariling Pámahalaán ng Pilipinas'') was the administrative body that governed the Philippines ...
was established in 1935 with the country gaining its independence in 1946 after hostilities in the Pacific Theatre of the
Second World War World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global war A world war is "a war War is an intense armed conflict between states State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literatur ...
had ended.   The Philippines have over 170 languages indigenous to the area, most of which belong to the
Malayo-Polynesian The Malayo-Polynesian languages are a subgroup of the Austronesian languages, with approximately 385.5 million speakers. The Malayo-Polynesian languages are spoken by the Austronesian peoples outside of Taiwan, in the island nations of Southeast A ...
branch of the
Austronesian language family The Austronesian languages (, , , ) are a language family, widely spoken throughout Maritime Southeast Asia, Madagascar, the islands of the Pacific Ocean and Taiwan (by Taiwanese aborigines). There are also a number of speakers in Asia, continent ...
. In 1939, then-president
Manuel L. Quezon Manuel Luis Quezon y Molina, (, ; 19 August 1878 – 1 August 1944), also referred to by his initials MLQ, was a Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''F ...
renamed the
Tagalog language Tagalog (, ; ; Baybayin (, ''pre-kudlit'': , ''virama-krus-kudlit'': , ''virama-pamudpod'': ; also formerly commonly incorrectly known as alibata) is a Philippine script. The script Script may refer to: Writing systems * Script, a di ...
as the ''Wikang Pambansa'' ("national language"). The language was further renamed in 1959 as ''Filipino'' by Secretary of Education Jose Romero. The 1973 constitution declared the
Filipino language Filipino (; ''Wikang Filipino'', ) is the national language A national language is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed language, sign langu ...
to be co-official, along with English, and mandated the development of a
national language A national language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languag ...
to be known as
Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipin ...
. Since then, the two official languages are
Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipin ...
and English. As of 2003 there are more than eleven million
overseas Filipino Overseas Filipinos ( fil, Pilipino sa Ibayong-dagat) are people of full or partial Filipino origin, i.e. people who trace their ancestry to the Philippines and who live or reside outside of the country. This term generally applies both to people ...
s worldwide, equivalent to about 11% of the total population of the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
.


Notable literature

''Pinoy'' is first used by Filipino poet
Carlos Bulosan Carlos Sampayan Bulosan (November 24, 1913 – September 11, 1956) was an English-language Filipino people, Filipino novelist and poet who immigrated to America on July 1, 1930. He never returned to the Philippines and he spent most of his life i ...
, in his 1946 semi-autobiography, '' America Is in the Heart'' – "The Pinoys work every day in the fields but when the season is over their money is in the Chinese vaults." The book describes his childhood in the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
, his voyage to
America The United States of America (U.S.A. or USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US) or America, is a country primarily located in North America North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and a ...

America
, and his years as an itinerant
laborer A laborer is a person who works in manual labor Manual labour (in British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect A standard language (also standard variety, standard dialect, and standard) is a language variety that ha ...

laborer
following the harvest trail in the rural West. It has been used in American
ethnic studies #REDIRECT Ethnic studies Ethnic studies, in the United States, is the interdisciplinary Interdisciplinarity or interdisciplinary studies involves the combination of two or more academic disciplines into one activity (e.g., a research project ...

ethnic studies
courses to illustrate the racism experienced by thousands of Filipino laborers during the 1930s and 40s in the United States.


Pinoy music

In the early 1970s, Pinoy music or "
Pinoy pop Pinoy pop or P-pop (also known as Philippine pop or Pilipino pop) refers to a contemporary pop music Pop is a genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the m ...
" emerged, often sung in
Tagalog Tagalog may refer to: Language * Tagalog language Tagalog (, ; ) is an Austronesian languages, Austronesian language spoken as a first language by the ethnic Tagalog people, who make up a quarter of the population of the Philippines, and as a se ...
– it was a mix of rock, folk and ballads – marking a political use of music similar to early
hip hop Hip hop or hip-hop is a culture Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior and Norm (social), norms found in human Society, societies, as well as the knowledge, beliefs, arts, laws, Social norm, customs, capabil ...
but transcending class. The music was a "conscious attempt to create a Filipino national and popular culture" and it often reflected social realities and problems. As early as 1973, the
Juan De la Cruz Band #REDIRECT Juan de la Cruz Band #REDIRECT Juan de la Cruz Band The Juan de la Cruz Band was a Filipino rock group A musical ensemble, also known as a music group or musical group, is a group of people who perform instrumental An instrumen ...
was performing "Ang Himig Natin" ("Our Music"), which is widely regarded as the first example of
Pinoy rock Pinoy rock, or Filipino rock, is the brand of rock music Rock music is a broad genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and style ...
. "Pinoy" gained popular currency in the late 1970s in the Philippines when a surge in
patriotism Patriotism or national pride is the feeling of love, devotion, and sense of attachment to a homeland A homeland is the concept of the place where a cultural, national, or racial identity had formed. The definition can also mean simply on ...

patriotism
made a hit song of Filipino folk singer
Heber Bartolome Heber Gonzalez Bartolome (November 4, 1948 – November 15, 2021) was a Filipino folk and Pinoy rock, rock singer, songwriter, composer, poet, guitarist, bandurria player, bluesman, and painter. His music was influenced by the "stylistic tradit ...
's "Tayo'y mga Pinoy" ("We are Pinoys"). This trend was followed by Filipino rapper
Francis Magalona Francis Michael Durango Magalona (October 4, 1964 – March 6, 2009), also known by the moniker Francis M, was a Filipino rapper, singer, songwriter, entrepreneur, actor, and television personality. He is widely regarded as the best and the mo ...
's "Mga Kababayan Ko" ("My Countrymen") in the 1990s and Filipino rock band
Bamboo Bamboos are a diverse group of evergreen In botany Botany, also called , plant biology or phytology, is the science of plant life and a branch of biology. A botanist, plant scientist or phytologist is a scientist who specialises in th ...
's "Noypi" ("Pinoy" in reversed syllables) in the 2000s. Nowadays, ''Pinoy'' is used as an adjective to some terms highlighting their relationship to the
Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Filipinas * hil, Republ ...

Philippines
or
Filipinos Filipinos ( fil, Mga Pilipino) are the people who are citizens of or native to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Re ...
.
Pinoy rock Pinoy rock, or Filipino rock, is the brand of rock music Rock music is a broad genre of popular music Popular music is music with wide appeal that is typically distributed to large audiences through the music industry. These forms and style ...
was soon followed by
Pinoy folk The traditional music of the Philippines, like the traditional music, folk music of other countries, reflects the life of common, mostly rural Filipinos. Like their counterparts in Asia, many traditional songs from the Philippines have a strong ...
and later, Pinoy jazz. Although the music was often used to express opposition to then
Philippine president The president of the Philippines ( fil, Pangulo ng Pilipinas, informally referred to as ''Presidente ng Pilipinas'') is the head of state A head of state (or chief of state) is the public persona who officially embodies a state (polity ...
Ferdinand Marcos Ferdinand Emmanuel Edralin Marcos Sr. (, September 11, 1917 – September 28, 1989) was a Filipino politician and lawyer who was the 10th president of the Philippines The president of the Philippines ( fil, Pangulo ng Pilipinas, sometime ...
and his use of
martial law Martial law is the temporary imposition of direct military control of normal civil functions or suspension of civil law by a government, especially in response to a temporary emergency where civil forces are overwhelmed, or in an occupied te ...
and the creating of the
Batasang Bayan The Batasang Bayan ( en, Legislative Advisory Council) was the consultative assembly and legislative advisory council in the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Repu ...
, many of the songs were more subversive and some just instilled national pride. Perhaps because of the cultural affirming nature and many of the songs seemingly being non-threatening, the Marcos administration ordered radio stations to play at least one – and later, three – Pinoy songs each hour. Pinoy music was greatly employed both by Marcos and political forces who sought to overthrow him.


See also

*
Tisoy In the Philippines, Filipino Mestizo ( es, mestizo (masculine) / mestiza (feminine); Filipino Filipino may refer to: * Something from or related to the Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas or ''Filipinas'' ), officially t ...
*
Demographics of the Philippines Demography of the Philippines records the human population, including its population density Population density (in agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the k ...
*
Ethnic groups in the Philippines The Philippines The Philippines (; fil, Pilipinas, links=no), officially the Republic of the Philippines ( fil, Republika ng Pilipinas, links=no), * bik, Republika kan Filipinas * ceb, Republika sa Pilipinas * cbk, República de Fili ...
*
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census Race and ethnicity in the United States census, defined by the federal Office of Management and Budget The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is the largest office within the Executive Office of the President of the United States The Execu ...


References

{{Ethnic groups in the Philippines Philippine culture Filipino slang Pejorative terms Filipino diaspora Demonyms