Sliced Mango Collective is aware that there are mixed feelings from those in the Philippines and in the diaspora about the use of “Filipinx.”
Our use of “Filipinx” is so that we do not exclude the trans and non-binary members of our community who feel discomfort using and identifying with “Filipino.”
Due to colonization, “Filipino” and many other languages in the Philipines are not genderless or gender neutral. Very few languages in the world are truly gender neutral. Furthermore, the culture of the Philippines and the diaspora is rooted in the gender binary. In order to move away from the myth of the gender binary, Sliced Mango Collective wants to be aware and specific in the language we use.
While there are some that claim that “Filipinx” further colonizes our culture, we respectfully disagree. “Filipino” as a term and identity is a colonial one, conceptualized by the Spanish conquistadors and derived from the name of King Philip II of Spain. It was not a term to describe the identity of the natives of the islands, but a term used by those of Spanish descent living in the Philippines. Eventually, it became a term used by anyone living in the islands of the Philippines.
Changes in language are inevitable. New words are always being added to the common lexicon of the Philippines and of the world, especially in a time of technology and the Internet. A hundred years of history has changed the meaning of the word “Filipino.” As of right now, we will continue to use “Filipinx” as it best fits our goal to use inclusive language. If in the future, there is a more inclusive term we can use, we can move towards using that. Meanwhile, here at Sliced Mango Collective, we encourage folks to use whatever term(s) they best self-identify with, whether that is Filipino, Filipina, Pinoy, Pinay, Pilipino, Filipinx, or something else. We have no desire to gatekeep the exploration of culture and identity. Everyone is on their own unique journey and Sliced Mango Collective is here to meet you wherever you are in that journey.