Understanding Apos as an Emotional Language among Young People
in a Commercial Farming Landscape



Apos (sulking) in Kankanaey, or tampo in Filipino, is a powerful tool in understanding emotion discourse in a cash crop farming landscape specifically in its transformed character. Symbolic of a deep-seated emotional state, this indigenous manifestation of sulking is seen as a form of everyday sensing. I attempt to examine how this relational idiom becomes a defining element in everyday interactions, and to explore its implication on the character of youth subculture in the northern Philippine Cordillera. The culturally encouraged response to apos is ayak (to assuage); in Filipino, lambing (assuaging), a more expressive equivalent. In certain cases, the ayak, actuations to repair broken ties, may no longer be effective when conditions contribute to their trivialization. This may lead to a string of events ending with the sulking person reaching the last straw. In a non-confrontational culture, the deployment of apos has become symbolic of young people’s emotional current, which can be pivotal in understanding emerging human conditions.

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