View Full Version : If you haven't read Jonathan Swift yet....

The Atheist
12-03-2007, 02:12 PM
Please do!

Jonathan Swift is rightly recognised as the greatest ever literary satirist and his works are as current as today's newspaper - he wrote about the human spirit, or the lack thereof and human nature hasn't changed much.

From his status as a Doctor of Divinity and member of the inner circle of the Tory (Conservative) Government of 1711-1714, Swift was in a unique position to comment on the church, England, politics and foreign affairs.

Readers who enjoy the writing of satirists like Tom Sharpe and Ben Elton will particularly enjoy the sculpter scalpel work of a man 250 years before that pair. You may not get as many laughs from Swift, but if the first time you read of the war between the Endians, you aren't paralysed laughing, please apply to your local doctor to have a sense of humour implanted!

And one cannot read A Modest Proposal without being overcome at the plight of a people for whom Swift would write such a message.

Jonathan Swift saved no targets from exposure of its worst excesses - his attacks on the church rival Chaucer's The Pardoner's Tale, while Gulliver's Travels lances many a boil on the face of society.

Take time and savour the work - it's easy to be put off by the archaic form - but if you persevere, I don't believe you can fail to enjoy the satirical exposure of humans' worst frailties. I always wonder whether people claiming to dislike Swift have seen something they dislike about themselves - we're all in there, every one us has the potnetial to need the services of a flapper, occasionally at least!

12-03-2007, 08:57 PM
Definately, I second everything you've said (for whatever that's worth).