Teacher Guide

A Modest Proposal and Other Satires Lesson Plan

Introduction to A Modest Proposal and Other Satires

Though Swift’s satires range in their subject, they all express concern about the tumultuous times in which Swift lived. During this period, England experienced Civil War. The continuing conflict between Catholic and Protestant populations toppled kings and planted seeds of the strife that would later divide Ireland for generations. In addition to these political upheavals, Ireland experienced dire economic conditions, as England’s rule led thousands to starve and many more to labor in horrible conditions without chance for personal advancement. As a Protestant clergyman, Swift was immensely interested in the question of religious conflict; but his examination of this subject should...

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