Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Rizal@150. Digging up some treasures from Charles Edward Russell's "Hero of the Filipinos"

Kaleidoscope immediately comes to our mind when we start talking about Rizal.  That's because our university professor cut short a giggly banter with a seatmate at the back row of our PI 100 class with "what's a kaleidoscope, Mr Ramos?".  The professor was starting the discussion on the dinner at the house of Capitan Tiago in the Noli.
That was before the First Quarter Storm.  Since then, we've had indeed a kaleidoscopic view of the hero's life and works from a more serious appreciation of Rizalian literature like the biographies by Austin Coates (Rizal  Filipino Nationalist and Patriot) and Leon Ma. Guerrero (The First Filipino) and the column articles of Ambeth Ocampo, among others. 

The latest find for our reading list is the biography "The Hero of the Filipinos. The Story of Jose Rizal, Poet, Patriot and Martyr" by Charles Edward Russell and E.B. Rodriguez published in New York in 1923 at $3 per copy then.  This book was dedicated "to the memory of Apolinario Mabini, philosophical democrat, gallant soldier of the common good.”

Russell (1860-1941) was a few months younger than JP Rizal.  He was a prominent writer, the author of 27 books. He was the top editor of two newspapers under Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst in the 1890s, and was cited as one of the 10 best reporters when he wrote for the New York HeraldMost of his books including "The Hero ..." and "The Outlook for the Philippines" are available online from University of Pennsylvania library.  His biography "The American Orchestra and Theodore Thomas" won the Pulitzer Prize in 1927.

Filipino EB Rodriguez served as director of Philippine Press Bureau in Washington before he collaborated with Russell on the book.

The fact that Russell was a co-founder of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909, a Socialist Party leader, and that he was dubbed "the chief of muckrakers" for his exposes during his lifetime pursuit of social justice, explain where he was coming from when he wrote about JP Rizal and supported the Philippine independence campaign. 

The prefatory note explains how materials, primarily from the works of the hero including the Noli and Fili, shaped this biography intended for American readers who were ignorant of this Malay (that's Russell's term) and largely influenced by prevailing racial and cultural prejudices of the time.

We found interesting gems in this book.  One set comprises the illustrations and photographs, and the other is the annotated bibliography.

Here are some of the illustrations and photographs with their original captions. 

We know that the Rizal house was not restored until 1950 during the time of President Elpidio Quirino.  This sketch tells us how it looked prior to its restoration.
This is the first time we saw this outline of the constitution of the La Liga.  It's not in the Rizal exhibits in Fort Santiago.
Was this picture taken at the house in Calamba?  Where are these remnants of the hero's library now?
Now we know how the Ateneo looked before the bombs of the US liberation forces reduced it to a pile of broken concrete in its site in Intramuros.
The Philippines was still looking for events to commemorate.  By law, Rizal Day was it at the time. The independence day celebration was yet a collective dream (04 July parades came after the Pacific war until the date was corrected to 12 June). 
A Rizal day gathering around the Rizal monument.  Today, we can't get near and touch the monument.  This photograph is also in Ambeth Ocampo's Heroes collection.
When we go to Fort Santiago, we should bring this photograph of his cell for comparison.

Students would find the long list of sources with notations in the bibliography very valuable for their research project.  Here a few interesting items (we retained the list number, and grouped them by subject):

His poetry --

1.   "El Embarque: Himno A la Flota de Magellanes." (The Departure: Hymn to Magellan's Fleet.) This poem seems to have been dated December 5, 1875, but according to Rizal's friends, Vicente Elio and Mariano Ponce, it was written in 1874. It was first published in "La Patria," Manila, December 30, 1899.
 4.   "Un Dialogo Alusivo A la Despedida de los Colegiales." (A Dialogue Embodying His Farewell to the Collegians.) Rizal mentions this poem as having been delivered toward the end of his course at the Ateneo, which would mean March, 1876.
 6.   "Un Recuerdo A Mi Pueblo." (A Remembrance to My Town.) Poem offered by the author at one of the sessions of the Academy of Literature of the Ateneo. First published in "La Patria," December 30, 1899. Written about 1876.
 20. "Junto al Pasig." Part of the first scene of the foregoing as sung by students in a religious procession, November 27, 1904. The music was composed by Blas de Echegoyen. "Sa Virgen ng Antipolo." Translation into Tagalog verse of the children's chorus in “Junta al Pasig," by Honorio Lopez.
 133. "Mi Retiro: A Mi Madre." My Retirement: To My Mother.) Poem written in Dapitan, 1895. First published in "Republica Filipina" in 1898. "Ang Ligpit Kong Pamumuhay: Sa Aking Ina." Tagalog translation of the above by Honorio Lopez. 

His fiction (finished/unfinished, published/unpublished) --

17. "Abd-el-Azis y Mahoma." (Abd-el-Azis and Mohammed.) Historical romance, read at the Ateneo by Manuel Fernandez y Maniung, December 8, 1879, at the meeting in honor of the Ateneo's patron saint.
 36. A historical novel, unfinished. Five chapters. He began to write it in Madrid while a student there. It has no title.
 50. "Los Animales de Juan." (John's Animals.) An unpublished story.
 61. "Noli Me Tangere." Berlin, March, 1887. His first complete novel. "Noli Me Tangere." Second edition, Manila, Chofre & Co., 1899. "Noli Me Tangere." Third edition, Valencia, Sempere, 1902. Somewhat shortened and  with mutilations. "Noli Me Tangere." Fourth edition, Barcelona, Maucci, 1903. With a short prologue by Ramon Sempau. "Au Pays des Moines." French translation of 61 by Henri Lucas and Ramon Sempau. Paris, 1899. With a few notes. "An Eagle's Flight." Abbreviated English translation. New York: McClure, Phillips & Co., 1900. "Friars and Filipinos." Another English translation, somewhat fuller than 61 f, by F. E. Gannet. New York, 1907. German translation of "Noli Me Tangere." Never finished, by Dr. Blumentritt. "Noli Me Tangere." Tagalog translation by Paciano Rizal, brother of the author. Rizal himself revised and corrected the sheets. "Noli Me Tangere." Tagalog translation by P. H. Poblete. "Noli Me Tangere." Cebuana translation by Vicente Sotto."Tulang na sa 'Noli.'"' The song from Chap. XXIII translated into Tagalog by M. H. del Pilar. 1888. "Noli Me Tangere" (Extracts). Translations of chapters, paragraphs, and sentences into many dialects in broadside form for general distribution in the islands."Ang 'Noli Me Tangere.' " Playlet performed on Rizal's birthday. Mentioned in "El Renacimiento," Manila, 1905. "The Social Cancer." A complete English Version of "Noli Me Tangere," from the Spanish of Jose Rizal by Charles Derbyshire (with a life of Rizal), Manila, Philippine Education Company, 1912.
82. A novel in Spanish. No title. Rizal began it in 1889, left unfinished.
109. "Mariang Makiling." Legend. Under the pseudonym "Laong Laan," published in "La Solidaridad," December 31, 1890. "Mariang Makiling." Tagalog translation of the foregoing. This was the last work that Rizal did for "La Solidaridad."
 111. "El Filibusterismo: Novela Filipina." (Filibusterism.) Ghent, 1891. First edition, rare. Fragments were published by papers in Spain in 1891. "El Filibusterismo." Second edition. Manila, Chofre & Co., 1900. "El Filibusterismo."' Tagalog translation by P. H. Poblete, 1904. "El Filibusterismo: Novela Filipina." Third edition. Prologada y anotada por W. E. Retana. Barcelona, de Henrich and Company. 1908. "The Reign of Greed." A complete English version of "El Filibusterismo," from the Spanish of Jose Rizal by Charles Derbyshire. Manila, Philippine Education Company, 1912.
 130. "Fragmentos de una Novela Inedita y sin Concluir." (Fragments of an Incomplete and Unpublished Novel.) Written in Dapitan. Fragments of a novel.
 131. "Makamisa.” Verses beginning a novel in Tagalog. Never completed.

His articles/essays --

40. "Costumbres Filipinas: un Recuerdo." (Philippine Customs: a Memory.) An incomplete article, written in Madrid, 1884 or 1885.
 43. "Llanto y Risas." An uncompleted article, written in Madrid between 1884 and 1886.
 44. Memorias de un Gallo. (Memories of a cock.) Incomplete. Mutilated.
 45. "Apuntes de Literatura Española, de Hebreo, y de Arabe." (Notes on Spanish, Hebrew, and Arabian Literature.) Not dated. Notes in a copy-book.
 46. "Semblanzas de Algunos Filipinos Companeros en Europa." Closely Noted Observations on Certain Filipinos Then Residing in Europe.
 47. "Estado de Religiosidad de los Pueblos en Filipinas." (Religious State of the Towns in the Philippines.) Unpublished.
 48. "Pensamiento de un Filipino." (Thoughts of a Filipino.) An unpublished article, date unknown.
 49. "Un Librepensador." (A Free-Thinker.) An unpublished article. Probably written in Madrid.
 53. "Mi Primer Recuerdo: Fragmento de Mis Memorias." (My First Recollection: Fragments of My Memories.) All these last few works seem to have been written while Rizal was a student in Madrid.
 74. "Informe al Administrador de Hacienda puiblica de la Laguna acerca de la Hacienda de los PP. Dominicos en Calamba." (Report to the Administrator of Public Finance of La Laguna about the Estate of the Dominican Friars in Calamba.) Rizal's report in the tax fight. It was signed by the justice of the peace, the board of officers, and seventy leading men of the Calamba district. Mr. Ponce describes it as the first stone thrown in the bitter contest that ensued between the village and the powerful religious corporation. It was published as an appendix to "La Soberania Monacal," by M. H. del Pilar. The date was early in 1888.
 76. "Notas, en Colaboracion con el Dr. A. B. Meyer y el Dr. F. Blumentritt, a un Codice Chino de la Edad Media, Traducido al Aleman por el Dr. Hirth." (Notes, Collaborated with Dr. A. B. Meyer and Dr. F. Blumentritt, on an old Chinese Manuscript of the Middle Ages, Translated into German by Dr. Hirth.) Published in "La Solidaridad," April 30, 1889.
 120. "La Mano Roja." (The Red Hand.) Sheet printed in Hong-Kong, June, 1892, calling attention to the number of fires started intentionally in Manila. "Ang Mapulang Kamay." Translation of above, published in 1894.
 121. "A los Filipinos! (Testamento publico.)" (To the Filipinos.) Dated at Hong-Kong, June 20, 1892. Published in various newspapers of the country. The address to his countrymen to be made public in case of his death.
 122. "Notas de Sucesos desde su Desembarco en Manila, Procedente de Hong-Kong, hasta su Deportaci6n y Llegada a Dapitan. 1892." (Notes of Events from his Landing in Manila Arriving from HongKong up to his Deportation and Arrival at Dapitan, 1892.)
 128. "Dapitan." Introduction to a work which was never followed up.
 135. "La Curacion de los Hechizados." (The Cure for the Bewitched.) An article believed to be unpublished.
 138. "Manifiesto--a Algunos Filipinos." (Manifesto-To Certain Filipinos.) Manila, Santiago Prison, December 15, 1896. This was published by many newspapers in the country.
 144. "Manila en 1872." An article by Rizal discovered after his death and published in the Manila "Citizen," January 9, 1919.
 145. "Cartas, un Jesuita." Another posthumous article, published in the Manila "Citizen," February 7, 1919.

His Speeches --

63. "Tagalische Verskunst.” Work read before the Ethnographical Society of Berlin, April, 1887, and published the same year, by that society. "Arte Metrica del Tagalog." (Metrical Art of the Tagalogs.) Spanish translation, made by Rizal, of the foregoing work. Amplified.
110. "Discurso en el Banquete de la Colonia Filipina de Madrid en la Noche del 31 de Diciembre de 1890." (Speech at the Banquet of the Philippine Colony of Madrid, held in that city on the evening of December 31, 1890.)
 Works in a Foreign Language.

 41. "La Fete de Saint Isidro." Not dated. Written in French.
 56. "Madrid." An epistolary chronicle, written in French from Germany in 1886. First published in "Nuestro Tiempo" in February, 1905.
 57. ''Critica Literaria." Not dated. Criticisms in French on "Tartarin sur les Alpes" and "Le Pistolet de la Petit Baronne." Germany, 1886.
 58. "Essai sur Pierre Corneille." In French. Germany, 1886.
 60. "Une Soiree chez M. B...." Written in Berlin, in French. Unpublished sketch. No date.
 62. "Histoire d' une Mere." A Tale of Andersen's. Translation from German to French. Berlin, March 5, 1887.
 68. "En las Montañas." (In the Mountains.) Poem written in Germany in 1887.
 80.  "Two Eastern Fables." In "Trubner's Record," London, June, 1889. English.
 136. "Comparative Tagalog Grammar." Written in English. Incomplete.
 141. "French Composition Exercises," by Jose Rizal, B. A., Ph. M., L. C. M. (Madrid), Postgraduate student in Paris, Leipzig, Heidelberg, Berlin and London. Manila, 1912. Philippine Education Company.

 Works in Tagalog.

59. "Tinipong Karunungan ng Kaibigan Ng mga Taga Rhin." Beginning of a translation of a book by Hebel into Tagalog.
 72. "Traducci6n de Poesias Alemanes al Tagalo." (Translation of German Poems into Tagalog.) Done in Calamba about 1887 or 1888. Unpublished.
 73. "Guillermo Tell: Trahediang Tinula ni Schiller sa Wikang Aleman." (William Tell.) Tagalog translation in which he used the new method of spelling.
 92. "Sa Mga Kababay-ang Dalaga sa Malolos." A letter headed "Europe, 1889."
 113. "Ang Mga Karapatan Nang Tao." Tagalog translation of the Rights of Man proclaimed by the French revolutionists of 1789. This was probably done during his stay in Hong-Kong and is what the Filipinos call a "proclamation."
 115. "Sa Mga Kababayan." Sheet printed in Hong-Kong in December, 1891. It deals with the land question of Calamba.

Works in Prison before execution.

137. "Datos para Mi Defensa." (Points for My Defense.) Written in Santiago Prison, December 12, 1896.
 139. "Adiciones a Mi Defensa." (Additions to My Defense.) Manila, December 26, 1896.
 140. "Ultimo pensamiento." (Last Thoughts.) The poem written in the chapel, a few nights before his death. The original manuscript was unsigned and written on ordinary ruled paper. Alcohol stains (from the lamp) can still be seen on the original where it blurred the ink. The above title was given to the poem by Mr. Ponce. Under the title "Ultimo Adios" (My Last Farewell) it was published in "La Independencia," September 25, 1898. It has been translated into many languages, including the island dialects, French, English, German, Chinese, and Japanese.

  • Russell, Charles Edward and Rodriguez, Eulogio Balan, (1923). The hero of the Filipinos; the story of José Rizal, poet, patriot and martyr. New York: Century, 1923. Retrieved from http://name.umdl.umich.edu/AFJ2273.0001.001 

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