Satire in Each Book of Gulliver's Travels
Throughout the four parts of Gulliver's Travels, Swift employs the eight types of satire - parody, understatement, invective, irony, hyperbole, sarcasm, inversion/reversal, and wit - to add historical and thematic depth to Lemuel Gulliver's fantastic voyage.
Explaining the tensions between Liliput and Blefusco in part I, for instance, Swift writes:
Which two mighty powers have, as I was going to tell you, been engaged in a most obstinate war for six and thirty moons past... During the course of these troubles, the Emperors of Blefusco did frequently expostulate by their ambassadors, accusing us of making a schism in religion, by offending against a fundamental doctrine of our great prophet Lustrog, in the fifty-fourth chapter of the Brundecral (which is their Alcoran). This, however, is thought to be a mere strain upon the text: for the words are these; That all true believers shall break their eggs at the convenient end. (Swift 85)
Here, Swift uses parody to ridicule the religious schism between the Catholic and Protestant Church which permeated Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries. Swift's mockery lies in that his narrator initially validates the arguments offered by Blefuscu against Lilliput's preferred way of...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 802 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 5891 literature essays, 1672 sample college application essays, 229 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in