Noli Me Tangere

Noli Me Tangere Literary Elements


novel, satire, romance

Setting and Context

The Philippines, near Manila, in the late 19th century

Narrator and Point of View

Omniscient third-person narrator

Tone and Mood

Sometimes satirical, dryly humorous, sometimes serious and mournful.

Protagonist and Antagonist

The protagonist is Ibarra, who hopes to live up to his father's legacy and improve his community. The main antagonist is Father Salví, who plots against him.

Major Conflict

The main conflict is between Ibarra and Father Salví. Yet Ibarra is also in conflict with Spanish colonial society as a whole as he attempts to reform Philippine society, though he is reluctant to realize the extent to which the dominant authorities oppose him.


Ibarra's escape


One example is the scene where the yellow man advocates for a heavier component for the mechanism to build the school, suggesting he is in on the plan to kill Ibarra. The heavy stone later kills the yellow man instead. Another example is Father Dámaso's close relationship with María Clara, as well as the description of María Clara possessing European features, which both foreshadow the revelation that she is Father Dámaso's biological daughter.






Metonymy and Synecdoche