Mga Ibong Mandaragit (The Preying Birds)
The English translation of Amado V. Hernandez' classic Mga Ibong Mandaragit, The Preying Birds tells the story of Mando Plaridel, the lead character in this novel of social consciousness. His character combines the qualities found in Simoun and Ibarra, the two lead characters in national hero Jose Rizal’s novels: Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo. Ibarra is the passive character in Rizal’s novels, while Simoun is the active propagandist who wakes up the people from their centuries-old sleep under Spanish colonialism.
After the war, society begins to know Mando as the brave editor of the Kampilan newspaper, who becomes involved in the problems of the farmers. Told from an omniscient point of view, Hernandez is able to enter the consciousness of the wealthy characters and show how the ruling classes-the politicians, landowners, judges, deputies and bishops-only protect their own interests and do not want to change the status quo.
The novel points to the cooperative system of land ownership as the way out for the landless poor and implies that change can only begin when the eyes of society have been finally opened.
Penguin Random House, SEA, Singapore
Softcover / 9 x 6 inches / 437 pages / BW