Would you stand up for what you think is right, even against a powerful monarch living across the sea?
José Rizal did.
José Rizal was born in 1861 in the Spanish-ruled Philippines. He was a gifted student, and during his school years became especially skilled in science and languages. He went on to study medicine in Manila and later traveled to Spain to finish his degree.
While in Europe, Rizal began to question Spanish colonialism. He met other like-minded Filipinos intent on rectifying the evils of the then three-centuries-old Spanish colonial system. He formed Los Indios Bravos, an association of Filipino writers whose poems, stories, and newspaper articles demonstrated the current condition of the Philippines at the hands of the Spanish. Their goal was to raise awareness of their cruel and terrible treatment of Filipinos. Los Indios Bravos quickly formed the basis of the Propaganda Movement: a peaceful crusade for social, political, and economic reform in the Philippines.
Rizal wrote his first book at this time, Noli Me Tangere (Touch Me Not), which highlighted the role of Spanish Catholic Friars in the colonization of the Philippines. But back home, his book was banned...