Rizal and Some of Him

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Jose Rizal’s Articles in La Solidaridad

La Solidaridad is an organization created by Filipinos in Spain on December 13, 1888. And it lasted for more than six years of giving information and sharing its every writer’s ideas. The organization’s aim was written on the first issued printout; "Our aspirations are modest, very modest. Our program, aside from being simple, is clear: to combat reaction, to stop all retrogressive steps, to extol and adopt liberal ideas, to defend progress; in a word, to be a propagandist, above all, of democratic ideas in order to make these supreme in all nations here and across the seas.” The paper stood for the moderate aims of representation of the Philippines in the Cortes, or Spanish parliament; secularization of the clergy; legalization of Spanish and Filipino equality; creation of a public school system independent of the friars; abolition of the polo (labor service) and vandala (forced sale of local products to the government); guarantee of basic freedoms of speech and association; and equal opportunity for Filipinos and Spanish to enter government service. The publication releases its issue every half of the month. Its first issue was released on February 15, 1889. And its last issue was on November 15, 1895.

Jose Rizal, as a member, wrote poems, novels, essays and scripts for plays in order to make Filipinos aware of the abuses that were being done by the Spanish officials and friars. Through his writings, he also recommended social and political reforms. He believed in a peaceful revolution, however, as opposed to a bloody one. He is quoted as having said that "The pens mightier than the sword." He started giving his articles to the publication on its third issue. He continues to give his articles until some internal issues arose. He decided to stop because he need time to work on his book; he wanted other Filipinos to work as well in the paper La Solidaridad; he considered it very important to the party that there be unity in the work.

Articles from Volume I of La Solidaridad:

* Los Agricultores Filipinos (The Filipino Farmers, no. 3, Marso 15, 1889)- This is the 1st article of Rizal. The article explained the exploitation and deplorable conditions of the poor farmers. * El Solfeo de La Defensa (The Theory of La Defensa, no. 3, Marso 15, 1889)- This appeared without any signature. According to Dr. Leoncio Lopez-Rizal, this article is not written by Rizal. This is included here only because many attribute its authorship to Rizal. It is a reply to the article of the publication La Defensa. * Me Piden Versos (They Ask Me for Verses, no. 4, Marso 31, 1889)- The poem consists of six ten-line stanzas in which the cry of nostalgia for country vibrates, and in which he sings its beauties and remembers his past inspiration in the bosom of his mother country. This is the poem that is said to have been requested by the mother of Rizal, which is not true, since Rizal has written this for a meeting of the Circulo Hispano-Filipino * A “La Defensa” (To La Defensa, no. 6, Abril 30, 1889)- This contains Rizal's reply to an article published by La Defensa in its 30th of March, 1889 issue, refuting the views expressed by Don Patricio de la Escosura, and calling the attention of all to the "pernicious influence of the friar (in the Philippines) in this age". * Los Viajes (Travel, no. 7, Mayo 15, 1889)- According to Wenceslao E. Retana on page 150 of his Vida, it is an interesting dissertation, more filosofico-historical than literary, emphasizing the advantages of traveling. A translation of this work into Tagalog was published in the Diariong Tagalog under the title Ang Pangingibang Lupa, simultaneously with the Spanish original. * La Verded Para Todos (The Truth for Al,l no. 8, Mayo 31, 1889)– Rizal’s defense against the Spanish charges. * Verdades Nuevas (New Truths, no. 12, Julio 31, 1889) - It is a defense of the reform movement in the country and refutes...
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