Philippine Indolence

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eThe Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890)


GROUP MEMBERS: Chen, Harwin Maynard Cheng, Ryan Allen Gan, Angeline

Go, Ailea Kamille Li, Jill Andrelene Pujol, Michael Andrew

Rustia, Maria Dominique

Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos By Jose P. Rizal (1890) I. BACKGROUND OF THE LITERARY WORK A. Location of author during composition Rizal wrote the first two installments when he was in Brussels and the last three installments in Madrid, Spain. B. Date of writing and publication The five installments of La Indolencia were published in Madrid, Spain in La Solidaridad on July 15, July 31, August 15, August 31 and lastly, on September 15, all in the year 1890. La Solidaridad was eventually published by the Philippines Education Co. in Manila, Philippines on 1913, seventeen years after Rizal’s death. C. Context of the literary work Rizal wrote La Indolencia de los Filipinos under the pen name of Dr. Sancianco as a response to the accusation of Filipino indolence. He pointed out how the word indolence is greatly misrepresented in the sense of little love for work and lack of energy. D. Audience addressed by the literary work The La Solidaridad was a continuation of Rizal’s campaign of education and it was addressed to his countrymen, the Filipinos, to awaken them to their own faults and at the same time arouse the Spaniards to the defects in the system of the Spain that led to the shortcomings of the Filipinos. II. CONTENTS OF THE LITERARY WORK A. Arguments on Indolence 1. Contrary to the belief of many, indolence is “not the cause of backwardness and trouble, but actually the effect of backwardness and trouble.” 2. Indolence is compared to a patient’s illness. While the patient (native) attributes it to the poor cure or system, the physician (colonizer) attributes it to the patient’s poor constitution. The chronic malady of indolence is not a hereditary one. B. Causes of Indolent Culture 1  


The Indolence of the Filipino / Sobre La Indolencia de los Filipinos Jose P. Rizal (1890) 1. The Hot Climate


a. The hot climate in the tropical country of the Philippines makes the individual quiet and restful, which makes the Spanish, both in the Philippines and in Spain, lazier than the French and the Germans who have cooler climates and are therefore more active at labor. b. The natives are forced to serve the colonizer who is made languid by the climate. However, a white man can adapt to any climate if he wills it, and the factors inhibiting this adaptation are liquor abuse and attempts to live as if they were in Europe when, in fact, they are in tropical Asia. c. One hour of work under hot weather is equivalent to one day of work in cold weather. Europeans themselves avoid working under the sun which thins their blood into inaction. 2. Indolence is a natural tendency of man. a. Man is created not merely to produce but to seek happiness for himself and his kind, so he is entitled to some form of rest. b. Man can naturally hate work, but what makes the indolence in the Philippines a bad type is the fact that it is magnified. 3. Filipinos became indolent when the Spanish colonizers seized their economy in the name of Christianity. a. Before the Spaniards arrived, the Filipinos were described as very active and enterprising and they did a lot of trade with neighboring countries. They farmed their own land for subsistence and were very industrious. This only changed when the Spanish colonizers came and made them lose their dignity as workers and businessmen. b. Filipinos, so fond of routine, forget their own past and submitted to the new routines introduced by the Spanish. 4. Man works for an object. Remove the object and you reduce him to inaction. a. The most active man in the world will fold his arms from the instant he understands that it is madness to bestir himself, that this work will be the cause of his...
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