Irony In A Modest Proposal

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IRONIC SOCIAL TREND: CRIMINLIZING POVERTY When I was in high school, my English class took home the assignment to write an ironic essay. Irony, for those a bit rusty on their literary terminology, is the use of words and imagery in a way that conveys a meaning quite the opposite of the meaning that those images and words would seem to convey literally. For example, suppose you open your front door to a knock, and before you stands Kevin, a person you find most tedious, obnoxious, and boring. With a warm smile, you then look Kevin in the eyes and say, “Well hello, Kevin. I can’t tell you how happy I am to see you. Please come in. I can always count on you for an insightful, interesting, and entertaining conversation. Please have a seat. I’ll get us some cold beverages. Now I will have to step out to Antarctica for a few moments to get ice cubes, but I will be back in a flash.” That’s an example of irony. Got it? WHEN IRONY WAS IRONY…show more content…
The full title of the original piece is, "A Modest Proposal for Preventing the Children of Poor People from Being a Burthen to their Parents, or the Country, and for Making them Beneficial to the Publick." In that essay, Swift ironically argued that children from poor Irish families should be purchased at the age of one year, fattened for commercial sale, and then marketed as live meat to wealthy landowners. This would control the population, give poor Irish families a source of additional revenue, suppress acts of infanticide and abortion, and provide culinary adventure to the wealthy. By pushing to such extremes the indifference and cruelty that he actually witnessed, Swift created an enduring essay that serves as an historical indictment of English rule in
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