José Rizals Kampf um Leben und Tod
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Harth, Dietrich: José Rizals Kampf um Leben und Tod: Facetten einer kolonialismuskritischen Biografie, Heidelberg: heiBOOKS, 2021.

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ISBN 978-3-948083-34-2 (PDF)
ISBN 978-3-948083-35-9 (Hardcover)

Published 02.09.2021.


Dietrich Harth

José Rizals Kampf um Leben und Tod

Facetten einer kolonialismuskritischen Biografie

José Rizal (1861-1896) studied medicine in Manila and Madrid, completed a special training as an ophthalmologist in Paris, Heidelberg and Berlin, wrote poems and socially critical novels, and attacked with a pointed pen the arbitrary colonial rule of the Spaniards over his Filipino-Tagalog homeland. Although he was a partisan of non-violent decolonization, he was sentenced to death by a Spanish military tribunal for incitement to riot and executed. Dietrich Harth’s biography approaches the life and work of the Filipino intellectual in four steps. In the first part, he sums up the most important phases of the more than 300 years of colonial rule of the Spanish crown and outlines the changes that followed the American regime, with particular emphasis on the idolization of Rizal as a national hero. The second part chronicles the history of the family background, the education and the persecution of Rizal, while the third part is devoted to his diverse, scholarly inspired research interests, which he treated in numerous essays, and not least to his closely related polemics against the colonial regime. The last part deals with the politically as well as literary remarkable novels Noli me tángere and El Filibusterismo, which established Rizal's fame in the Southeast Asian world and which is part of government-ordered reading in all educational institutions in the Philippines. The present biography is the first comprehensive presentation in German that seeks to approach Rizal's way of thinking in a direct way, i.e. by translating it from Filipino Spanish into German.

Media coverage

"Mit dieser von leichter Hand geschriebenen Biografie ist ein grundlegendes Buch zu José Rizal entstanden."
Marion Gottlob, "Lieber Freund, denke nie übel von mir", Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung, Ocotber 29, 2021.

Dietrich Harth (born 1934), studied Classical Philology, German Studies and Sociology in Frankfurt a. M. and Tübingen. 1973 to 2000 professor for German literature and Comparative literature at the University of Heidelberg. Focus: cultural anthropology and literature, cultural memory, ritual research.

Erster Teil: Spuren, Geschichten
Vermischte Bemerkungen über die Geschichten des Kolonialismus und Anti-Kolonialismus auf den Philippinen
Zweiter Teil: Biografie: Eine Vergegenwärtigung nach Jahresrhythmen
Lebensentwürfe (1861–1882)
Aufbruch (1882–1887)
Going Public (1887–1890)
Maulwurfsarbeit und Verfolgung (1890–1892)
Verbannung und Tod (1892–1896)
Zwischenspiel: Chiffre Europa
Dritter Teil: Fröhliche Wissenschaft
Zeitgenosse Nietzsche
Sich eine Vergangenheit geben
Wider das Rassen-Delirium
Exkurs über Indolenz
Bismarck, das „arme k“ und die Revolution
Lob des Zweifels
Vierter Teil: Am Abgrund
Die Signatur des Autors
Rizals literarische Beredsamkeit
Exkurs über die Kunst des Zitierens
Ungesellige Geselligkeit