An Essay on the methods and objectives of Swift's satire.
This essay will look at the first quotation of Swift's and analyse his use of satire in Gulliver's Travels, A Modest Proposal and The Lady's Dressing Room. Along with Pope, Gay, and other literary lights, Swift was a member of The Martinus Scriblerus Club. The purpose of this club was to satirise the foolishness of modern man. The influence of the club can be seen in Gulliver's Travels as well as Pope's Dunciad.
Swift had been a great traveller and he wanted to set down the most significant of his observations upon human life so that the world might be forced to read them. Gulliver's Travels can be recognised as that complete satire on human life. The novel is a condemnation of certain human traits. Gulliver's experiences with various flawed societies foreshadow his ultimate rejection of human society in the fourth voyage.
Swift's style is composed chiefly of satire, allegory, and irony. Satire can be defined as a mocking attack against vices, stupidities, and follies of man with an aim to educate and improve.
Gulliver's Travels is the product of a mind deeply concerned with political matters. In the book many figures which seem to be imaginary are meant to depict real personages. There are many political allusions abound in the Travels. Some are to the events of the end of Queen Anne's reign and others to the reign of George I. London at the time of the novel's publication buzzed with speculations regarding the identity of some of the characters. In Part One as Swift begins to describe the politics of Lilliput the country slowly becomes England. The Lilliputian Emperor for example represents King George I. Swift had no admiration for the King, and uses the practices of...