As Filipinos and especially those living in Manila, what do you think about Dan Brown's description of Manila in his new book Inferno?
In Dan Brown's Inferno, he refers to Manila as "the gates of hell", describing it as a city of "six-hour traffic jams, suffocating pollution [and] horrifying sex trade." In his book, Dan Brown writes about a character, Sienna, who is overcome by the city's destitution, filth and child prostitution – and is later raped in one of its many slums.
Metro Manila's chairman Francis Tolentino decided to adress a letter to the author. In it he wrote: "we are greatly disappointed by your inaccurate portrayal of our beloved metropolis," "We are displeased [by] how you have used Manila as a venue and source of a character's breakdown and trauma, much more her disillusionment in humanity." In it he wrote that he objected to the descriptions written about Manila, which he argues neglect the "good character and compassion" of Filipinos, calling Manila "an entry to heaven" and a "centre of Filipino spirit, faith and hope"
"MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino is either blind or perhaps never leaves his guarded mansion without his chauffered limo with its tinted windows," commented one reader on the PhilStar website, describing Brown's depiction of the city as "near perfect".-guardian.co.uk
What is your stand? Make a post and voice it out. What do you RPers think?
I've yet to read the book but I think Tolentino's reaction is laughable.
We can't be butt-hurt over things that have some truth behind them. The traffic situation in the metro *can* be hellish. The pollution isn't something to laugh about. The slave-trade *is* an unfortunate reality. And one can not deny the existence of the scores of desolate and desperate people about.
I'm not saying the city I live in is ugly as sin. I think it's pretty damn beautiful in spite and despite everything but we need to acknowledge the fact that Manila, hell, the entire country is an amalgam of good and bad.
I haven't read the book. But I'm pretty sure Manila is not the first and the last city to be used as a place of hell in literary world. There are truths to Brown's portrayal. I have seen indie films that depicts the ugliness of our own country by our own local artists and they get praises for it. I do not live in MM but IMO no need to react so very "displeased" about it, this controversy will only add fuel to the demands and curiosity for the said book.
@jemchan_n...you are right it is laughable. I'm sure he means well but the book sounds like it's not meant to be just a pleasant read.