Mangy Parrot

1534 WordsJul 12, 20187 Pages
Parrots are beautiful intelligent birds. Mange is a festering disease caused by parasitic mites that dig into the body and results in unsightly sores and unremitting irritation. Who or what does The Mangy Parrot refer to? Is Mangy Parrot simply Periquillo’s nickname or is it intended to be a metaphor for New Spain? If the parrot is symbolic of the lands and people of New Spain: the colonial caste system and government is the disease infesting the land. Unable to publish his views directly due to censorship, de Lizardi wrote his apparently humorous, entertaining tale as a cover for his ideas. Throughout the story Fernández de Lizardi cleverly interweaves his true objective which is to increase opposition to the colonial societal and…show more content…
(de Lizardi, pp. 111-113) De Lizardi is drawing attention to the inequities in the patronage system. The rights are all on the Maestro’s side. If a youth is apprenticed to a lazy or bad craftsman he may not be schooled in the trade and he may even be treated as slave labor instead of a contracted employee. De Lizardi goes on to point out that everyone is put at risk when the system malfunctions, as in the poisoning of the patient. In these, as well as other examples in the book, the author goads and motivates the readers to recall similar examples that have occurred to themselves, family members or friends. The uncaring, unsympathetic manner in which Periquillo tells the stories enhance and mimic the disregard the Spanish have for the plebian classes. This is intended to inspire resentment in the plebian readers as they are reminded of the inequalities in the colonial systems. Another flaw in the system de Lizardi exposes is the justice system. When Periquillo is imprisoned for a crime he did not commit, he learns that although prisons are built to hold thieves and murders many innocent people are sent intentionally sent there by the rich and powerful. Without any money to hurry their cases along, the accused can rot in jail for many years without a trial. Additionally, corrupt notaries hold undue sway over the justice system. (de Lizardi, p. 84 – 87) Later in the story, Periquillo has

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