The Philippines has been influenced by many nations. They have been occupied for a long time by Spain and then the Americans by a few decades. The Japanese came and then the Americans again. Filipinos themselves like to be influenced and perhaps a little too much. Theytake pride on the fact that they can copy other cultures and perhaps make their practices even better than the original.
1) Spain- For more than 300 years, the Philippines was under Spanish rule. On march 16, 1521, the great explorer Ferdinand Magellan of Portugal landed in Masao Island and thus stated the conquest of Spain on the Philippines. Magellan proved that the world was round and also proved that primitive weapons hurt and can kill as well. Spain’s main influence can be seen in religion as the Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia. Spain also used religion to rule over the land and enslave a lot of Filipinos. These days, Spain’s influence other than Catholicism can be seen in the food, language and foul language.
2) United States- The US were only here for a long time and for a lot of historians, their conquest of the Philippines was a fluke. History shows that the Philippines was ready to take over Intramuros, the seat of Power at that time when Spain sold the Philippines to the US via the Treaty of Paris. Nevertheless, the influence is much greater after World War II when the Americans basically made the country look like a mini-US. Today, the Philippines is very much “westernized” or Americanized. For the longest time, products would sell better if it were called “stateside” and “imported”. Filipinos love a lot of things about American culture such as fast food, sitcoms and music. Furthermore, most Filipinos can speak a little bit of English making it very easy to communicate even for foreigners. Almost anything American can be a hit in the country. Hollywood movies are flocked, Starbucks is always filled to the brim and the latest fashion is followed or replicated.
3) China- Unlike the other three countries in this list, China never conquered the country by way of military might. Instead, China got into Philippine culture by way of mercantilism. Since time immemorial, the Philippines has been trading with the Philippines and Chinese immigrants who decided to live here brought along their culture. In terms of food, Filipinos love Chinese food such as siopao, siomai, taho and hopia. Filipinos also follow some aspects of Chinese culture such as feng shui, dragon dances and even Chinese New Year. Lately, Chinese movies by way of Hong Kong has also been vey popular as well as some TV soap operas
4) Japan- Japan conquered the Philippines for only a few years and was never truly embraced by the country. Historians point to the fact that unlike Spain they were only here for a few years and unlike the Americans, they were very harsh on the Filipinos. As a result, people did not want to be like them and their influence has been minimal.