Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy 150th birthday Jose Rizal!
The Penguin Classics edition of El Filibusterismo is now available locally. I got mine at National Bookstore Greenbelt for P595 P549, and only two copies are left in the stand.

In the spirit of The Count of Monte Cristo and Les Misérables, a major new translation—José Rizal's stunning continuation of Noli Me Tangere.

José Rizal was one of the leading champions of Filipino nationalism and independence. His masterpiece, Noli Me Tangere, is widely considered to be the foundational novel of the Philippines. In this riveting continuation, which picks up the story thirteen years later, Rizal departs from the Noli's themes of innocent love and martyrdom to present a gripping tale of obsession and revenge. Clearly demonstrating Rizal's growth as a writer, and influenced by his exposure to international events, El Filibusterismo is a thrilling and suspenseful account of Filipino resistance to colonial rule that still resonates today.

The book is translated by Harold Augenbraum, who also translated Penguin's Noli Me Tangere edition. (I wonder though, if selecting these editions over locally published El Fili and Noli makes me less patriotic.)

Thanks to Noli, I was moved to research about Rizal's life on my own. The book and Rizal's murderI admit an editorialized term but no less truealso sparked my then renewed outrage against the Catholic Church, a hangup of mine which I'm trying my best to control and be Zen about. (Hence, you haven't read me rile about the CBCP's stand against the Reproductive Health and Divorce bills.)

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