Tuesday, January 3, 2012


1890 - Filipino polymath, propagandist, and patriot Jose Mercado Rizal writes fellow reformist Mariano Ponce, informing him that he had already sent nine copies of the Morga book to Fernando Canon; the Morga work is Rizal's republication of Antonio de Morga's Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas (Events in the Philippine Islands) that discusses the ancient history of the Philippine archipelago before the colonization schemes of Spain; Ponce will later praise Rizal for his work on Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas involving the writing of the excellent introduction and of annotations showing that the natives of the islands had an advanced civilization before the Spanish colonizers came; while the Morga work is valuable in its record of the early Filipino culture, including ethics, skills, and social patterns that have either been destroyed or comprised during the Spanish colonization,  Rizal's 1890 republication is apparently an attempt to neutralize the obvious bias of Morga in the Spaniard's rather disjointed writing of the history of wars, intrigues, diplomacy and evangelization of the archipelago, even including inventions of  'facts', in the bid to defend the bloody conquest of the natives; Rizal, Ponce, Graciano Lopez Jaena, and Marcelo H. del Pilar form the more prominent members of the Propaganda Movement aiming to foster heightened awareness of the "mother" country Spain as to the needs and plight of its colony, the Philippines and to make for a closer and more equal association of the indios/Filipinos and Spaniards.

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