El Filibusterismo: Summary and Analysis of Chapter 21 (Manila Types)

Summary:
People all over Manila gather at the theater to watch Les Cloches de Corneville, a French performance.  Only one person, of Spanish blood, seems to have no interest in going inside the theater.  His name is Camarroncocido.  He comes from a prominent Spanish family, however is dressed rather poorly like a peasant and keeps wandering in the streets. He occupies himself by putting up posters of upcoming shows in the theater.  As he approaches the Teatro de Variadades, he spots suspicious-looking men and finds out that Simoun is ordering them to go through measures to put a stop to a civil unrest.

Points of Note:
Camarroncocido is a name that means “scalded shrimp” because his skin is rosy red.  He is a Spaniard who does not give much importance to his Spanish roots.  Although he is considered to be “blue-blooded” given that he comes from an elite Spanish line, he ends up doing menial tasks the moment he enters Philippine territory.  Camarroncocido is an exact opposite of Don Custodio who, despite being a common man in Spain, came to the Philippines to take advantage of his roots and use it to gain power.

Frequently Asked Questions:
Question: What undesirable trait does Rizal portray in the character of Camarroncocido?
Answer: Rizal gives light to the common social illness of people who refuse to care about events that have no direct consequence to them personally, even though these events might cause civil unrest or might be detrimental to a number of other citizens.

Question: How is the society of Manila divided into two?
Answer: Because of the adamant objection of the Spanish friars to the play, and the unanimous support to it by the government officials, the people of Manila began to wonder.  Almost everyone wanted to see it: First, there were those who wanted to watch the presentation just to see what made the friars ban people from it; and second, those who wanted to see it so they could find out if it really was worth banning.  If the friars hadn’t forbidden the people to watch it, the audience would not have reached such an incredible number.

Question: Who were the men that Camarroncocido spotted in the dark?
Answer: They were Simoun’s men.

Question: How did Tadeo get admission to the theater?
Answer: Basilio did not go with Macaraeg because he wanted to study for his exams.  Isagani gave Basilio’s ticket to Tadeo instead.

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