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Meaning and History: The Rizal Lectures
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Meaning and History: The Rizal Lectures

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  438 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
The author's characteristic wit and insight are again evident in this collection of lectures and conference papers written between the years 1993-1998 and delivered in different schools and gatherings in the country and abroad.
Paperback, First Printing, 121 pages
Published 2001 by Anvil Publishing, Inc.
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K.D. Absolutely
Today, August 27th, is a holiday here in the Philippines. It is our National Heroes' Day. I think, officially, we have three national heroes: Jose Rizal (the doctor), Andres Bonifacio (the fan maker) and Emilio Aguinaldo (the general). Having existed on earth in the late 19th century, they were all contemporaries. I think they met each other. But then, and even now, they did not see eye-to-eye. They did not agree on how to go about toppling the Spaniards. They did not even agree on where to go f ...more
Dec 21, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The national hero of the Philippines is José Rizal and his most popular historian is Ambeth R. Ocampo. In these lectures, Ocampo uses the sense of history (kasaysayan in Tagalog) as salaysay (narrative) and saysay (meaning) to guide his readers and listeners through the important facets of Rizal as revolutionary, scientist, dreamer (of literal night dreams), and historian. His conclusion: Rizal is a reflection of the Filipinos' continuing search for a national identity. This is an imposed argume ...more
Nov 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pinoy, nonfiction
Okay, just a brief review: Like all Ocampo's works, I love the way history is narrated here (although perhaps on some aspects my good Church History professor might disagree, with whom I agree with, but never mind.), although there are some parts that seem to be out of nowhere. Now I'm inspired to read the English translations of Noli and Fili .
Sep 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: history
as usual Ambeth Ocampo drives me to dwell more on our history, to read more about our history and appreciate our history more...

Nov 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kwesi 章英狮
Dec 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Book #152 for 2011
Book #78 for Off the Shelf!
Jul 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Geno by: Cynthia Sadaya
After reading and listening to Ambeth Ocampo, contemporary historians seem cheesy and cliche.
This book is one of our Recommended Reads! Read our post here.

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John Ray Catingub
Mar 14, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ambeth Ocampo always makes history palatable and his lectures on Jose Rizal are no exception. Whether taking off his overcoat, again, to get to the root of the man or examining his historiographical biases to serve a revolutionary purpose, Ocampo's writing is genial, though with the authority of a lecturing professor. In a time of shorter attention spans, and for a people not known to read much, his examinations of history, and humanising of heroes, are a Godsend.
Jan 25, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Got a copy of this book in one of Ocampo's talks. Very interesting and enjoyable to read.
Matthew Lopez
Oct 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
This compilation of lectures on the National Hero is a must read for those wanting to understand Rizal in other fields. This is a good companion piece to the renowned Rizal Without the Overcoat and the Looking Back series as it shows that Rizal was not just a writer, nationalist and others but a true renaissance man.
Jan 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
This isn't a proper review but when I was reading this book, I learned that YouTube users fight in the comment section over the proper pronunciation of “deus ex machina.” That’s both meaning and history right there.
Matthew Lopez
Sep 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is different from the normal books being written by Ambeth. It is serious, scholarly but also riveting and insightful because these are lectures that was not heard by the general public and is now shared so to provide a more humane sides of Rizal and Bonifacio.
Mia Claire
Nov 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: filipiniana
This is the first Ambeth Ocampo book that I read. Very entertaining and informative, indeed. It made me more interested in Rizal studies. I'd like to read more of his works in the near future (and get these books signed in the next MIBF haha) :)

Janisa Abubacar
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Interesting read. Challenges our preconceptions on nationalism and heroism.
Mar 20, 2016 added it
It was kind of good, but I felt like there was something missing. Aside from that,it was good
Jayvee Paguia
It is so beautiful and touching
Oct 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
Good essay about Rizal. :)
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Lamberto R. Ocampo better known as Ambeth R. Ocampo (b. 1961) is Filipino historian, academic, journalist, cultural administrator and author best known for his writings about Philippines' national hero José Rizal, and for his bi-weekly editorial page column in the Philippine Daily Inquirer, "Looking Back." He became the Chairman of the National Historical Commission of the Philippines in 2002 unti ...more
“A historian can never claim to have the last word on anything as he is limited by his sources and further so by his viewpoint.” 9 likes
“Rizal's greatest misfortune is being national hero of the Philippines.” 8 likes
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