Topics: Philippines, José Rizal, Philippine Revolution Pages: 2 (822 words) Published: March 5, 2013
This novel was written in the nineteenth century by the Philippines’ national hero, Dr. Jose Rizal, then an expatriate in Europe waging a propaganda campaign against tyranny and oppression in his native land. It is a sequel to his earlier work, Noli Me Tangere, a socio-political novel that depicted the conditions in the Philippine Islands - a colony of Spain for three centuries - under the Spanish yoke. Simoun, a mysterious and powerful jeweller who is in good graces with the Captain General plots a coup d’ etat against the Spanish colonial government. He secretly abets the abuses committed against the natives in the hope of stirring them to rise up in revolt. To weaken the regime, he encourages corruption, using his immense wealth to foment injustice and provoke massive unrest. Unknown to all, Simoun is Juan Crisostomo Ibarra, a man who had been wrongfully accused of rebellion and condemned in a plot instigated by his enemies including a friar who had unchaste feelings for his fiancée, Maria Clara. Everybody thought Ibarra had been killed as a fugitive, but in truth he had escaped, enriched himself abroad and has returned to the Islands to avenge himself. He plans to take Maria Clara who, believing Ibarra is dead, had entered the convent. In the course of his plans, Simoun comes into contact with young idealistic Filipinos whom he wants to enlist to his cause. One of these is Basilio, one of the few who know his secret. He had been adopted by Kapitan Tiyago, a wealthy landowner and father of Maria Clara. Basilio is about to graduate as doctor of medicine and plans to marry Huli, his childhood sweetheart. Huli is the daughter of Kabesang Tales, a homesteader who had been dispossessed of his lands by the friars. Turned outlaw, Kabesang Tales and other victims of injustice have been enlisted by Simoun in his plan to overthrow the government. Another student, Isagani, dreams of a progressive future for his country but his fiancée, Paulita, who shares his aunt Dona...
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