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of church and state which the censorship did not permit to be touched in speech or print. A Filipino friend, Dr. Maximo Viola, found Rizal without resources and almost suffering, but with the plan of a book at last accomplished. He loaned the money and by cutting many pages the work was lessened in cost so an edition of 2000 copies could be issued.

Many different opinions of "Noli Me Tangere" have been expressed but America's foremost literary critic, the novelist W. D. Howells, certainly has not left his judgment in doubt: "I don't know whether it ought to be astonished or not that a little saffron man somewhere in that unhappy archipelago should have been born with a gift so far beyond that of any or all of the authors of our roaring literary successes, but these things are strangely ordered by Province, and no one who has read this pathetic novel ca deny its immeasurable superiority. The author learned his trade from the modern Spanish novelists, but he has gone beyond them in a certain sparing touch with which he presents situation and character by mere statement of fact, without explanation or comment. It is great novel, of which the most poignant effect is in a sense of unimpeachable veracity."

Rizal succeeded in his task for he has rivaled the work of Sue and the story dominates one from the first. Of it the author wrote in answer to attacks on its literary faults that it was not written to gain him admission into the Spanish Academy and that it could only be judged by its results. Single handed it destroyed Spain's prestige in the Philippines and laid bare to the world in all its hideousness the rottenness of the Philippines administration.

Much of the book is personal experience. The unjust treatment of his mother when no sooner was one accusation proven without cause than another equally groundless was substituted, is the foundation for a similar statement about Ibarra's father. Mrs. Rizal was persecuted successively during four years with seven charges, including cruelty, theft and attempted murder of a relative and in no case was any evidence presented but the malice of the provincial judge convicted while the supreme court as soon the matter came to it each time ordered the

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[Begin] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8] [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [29] [30] [31] [32] [33] [34] [35] [36] [37] [38] [39] [40] [41] [42] [43] [44] [45] [46] [47] [48] [49] [50] [51] [End]
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created: June 12, 1998
updated: June 12, 1998
APSIS Editor Johann Stockinger