RIZAL AND HIS TIME PROLOGUEThe world of Rizal’s Times
Objectives 1. Discuss the historical background of the world and of the Philippines during Rizal’s time. 2. Identify the different evils done by the Spanish authorities in the Philippines. 3. Appreciate the events that led to the positive change in the lives of the
Before the birth of Rizal.
Feb. 19, 1861 – the liberal Czar Alexander II issued a proclamation emancipating 22,500,000 serfs to appease the rising discontent of the Russian masses. June 19, 1861 the birth of Rizal, the American Civil war was raging furiously in the United States on the negro Slavery.
April 12, 1861 the negro slavery in the United States erupted. September 22, 1863, President Lincoln issued his famous Emancipation Proclamation. June 1, 1861, Benito Juarez, a full blooded Zapotec Indian was elected president of Mexico.
Emperor Napoleon III of the Second French Empire with his imperialistic desire to secure a colonial stake in Latin America invaded and conquered Mexico. He installed Archduke Maximilian of Austria as puppet emperor of Mexico on June 12, 1864.
Because of the raging American Civil War President Juarez cannot obtain military aid from his friend president Lincoln.
Battle of Queretaro – President Juarez with the help of the US troops defeated the Maximilian forces and executed Emperor Maximilian. Thus fizzled out Napoleon’s ambition to colonize Latin America.
The Birth of Rizal Italians and Germans succeeded in unifying their own countries The Italians under the leadership of Count Cavour and of Garibaldi and his army of “Red Shirts” drove out the Austrians and French armies from Italy and proclaimed the Kingdom of Italy under King Victor Emmanuel with Rome as Capital.
The Prussians led by Otto von Bismarck, the “Iron Chancellor” defeated France in the Franco- Prussian war and established the German Empire on Jan. 18, 1871, with King Wilhelm of Prussia as the First Kaiser of the German Empire.
With the defeat of Emperor Napoleon his Second French Empire Collapsed and over its ruin the Third French Republic arose, with Adolph Thiers as first President.
The times of Rizal saw the flowering of Western Imperialism. England emerged as the world’s leading imperialist power.
During glorious reign of Queen Victoria the British people asserted: Britannia Rules the Waves.” Britain won in the First Opium war (1840-1842) against the tottering Chinese Empire under the Manchu dynasty, and acquired the island of HongKong (Fragrant Harbor)
In the Second Opium War (1856- 1860) Britain won again and forced the Manchu Dynasty to cede Kowloon Peninsula.
After suppressing the Indian Rebellion and dismantling the Mogul Empire, she imposed her raj (rule) over the sub-continent of India. (India, Pakistan and Bangladesh) By winning the Three Anglo- Burmese war, she conquered Burma.
Other lands in Asia that became British colonies: Ceylon (Sri Lanka), Maldives, Aden, Malaya, Singapore and Egypt. In South Pacific they were able to get Australia and New Zealand.
Other Imperialist countries that followed Britain’s example: France – Vietnam, annexed Cambodia and Laos. Then merged all these countries into a federated colony under the name French Indochina.
Dutch – colonized the vast and rich archipelago of the East Indies and named it the Netherlands East Indies (now Indonesia).
Czarist Russia – conquered Siberia, Kamchatka, Kuriles, and Alaska ( which she sold in 1867 to the U.S. for $7,200,000. She also conquered the Muslim Khanates of Bokhara, Khiva, and Kokand in Central Asia.
They also acquired Manchuria and as a “sphere of influence” they were able to build the 5,800- mile Trans-Siberian Railway, reputed to be “the world’s longest railroad” linking Vladivostok and Moscow.
July 8, 1853, an American squadron under the command of Commodore Mathew C. Perry re-opened Japan to the world. (214-year isolation) Emperor Meiji (Mutsuhito) modernized Japan by freely accepting Western Influences, including Imperialism. Fought against the weak China in the Sino-Japanese war, grabbed Formosa (Taiwan), Pescadores and later annexed Korea.
Germany was late in scramble for colonies in Asia and Africa, turned to the Islands in the Mid- Pacific world. Ilties a German warship entered the harbor of Yap (an island in the Carolines) seized the island and hoisted the German flag.
Strangely, the Spanish Governor of the Carolines (Don Enrique Capriles) was present in the island but showed no resistance. The German seizure of Yap island enraged Spain who claimed sovereignty over the Carolines and Palaus by right of discovery by Francisco Lezcano who named it Carolina in Honor of King Charles II.
To abort the brewing conflict between the two country, both submitted the Carolina Question to Pope leo XIII for arbitration .
The Holy father recognized Spain’s sovereignty over the island but gave two concessions to Germany: the right to trade in the disputed islands the right to establish a coaling station in Yap for German navy.
Rizal was in Barcelona when these things are happening and he even wrote an article on the Carolina Question at La Publicidad, a newspaper owned by Don Miguel Morayta.
While imperialist powers were enjoying the fruits of their colonial rule Spain who was once upon a time the “Mistress of the World”, was stagnating as a world power.
She lost her rich colonies in Latin America (Paraguay, Argentina, Chile, Colombia and Ecuador.
The Central American countries (Costa Rica, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua, Venezuela, Peru, Bolivia and Uruguay) Colonies that remained under her rule was Cuba, Puerto Rico and the Philippines.
The Philippines of Rizal’s Times During the times of Rizal, the sinister shadows of Spain’s decadence darkened the Philippine Skies.
Evils during the Spanish rule in the Philippines Instability of Colonial administration Corrupt Officialdom No Philippine representation in the Spanish Cortes Human rights denied to Filipinos
No equality before the law Maladministration of justice Racial Administration Frailocracy Forced labor Haciendas owned by the friars Guardia civil