Popular essayist and satirist, Jonathan Swift, in his pamphlet, “A Modest Proposal,” (which at first was anonymously published) is proposing a solution to end the famine in Ireland. He adopts a sarcastic and straightforward tone in order to explain his outrageous proposal to the Irish public. Swift’s purpose is to bring to light the terrible situation of the Irish people and to propose a way to fix it. In this pamphlet, he proposes to end the famine by outrageously suggesting eating and selling Irish children. Swift begins his pamphlet by describing the sad and poor Irish streets with mothers and child beggars in rags.
In fact, he refers to “A very worthy Person, a true Lover of his Country, and whose Virtues I highly esteem, was lately pleased, in discoursing on this matter, to offer a refinement upon my Scheme”(17). As a result, Swift shows that even the most patriotic person to both Ireland and Britain (since Ireland was under British control at the time) realizes that within this current situation of poverty, this proposal is a solution and can be acted out in many different
In “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathan Swift, there are many disturbing remarks that make the readers uncomfortable. The purpose of his essay was to try to make the Irish people open their eyes so that they would take better care of themselves. At this period, the Irish politicians were corrupt and the people were not willing to fight to regain their country from the recent occupation of Ireland by England. He used the idea of eating the yearling children of poor families in order to accentuate the idea that the only people the wealthy men of Ireland cared about was themselves, and not the lives of the Irish citizens. The author uses logos to his advantage in order to show the overall amount of people that are in poverty and how they would be able
For example on page 2 Swift says “so as to render them plump, and fat for a good table. A child will make two dishes at an entertainment for friends.” statements like this make Swift’s proposal even more outrageous. This is a sarcastic attempt by Swift to make the proposal look attractive, but his statement has an underlying meaning of making the idea look repulsive. Additionally on page 2 Swift states “That a young healthy child well nursed, is, at a year old, a most delicious nourishing and wholesome food.”
While the poor people of Ireland continue to breed, the rich will have elaborate feasts and dinner parties with the meat of peasant’s children. The idea of the poor raising food for the rich as a solution to poverty is ludicrous as well as highly ironic. The rich will continue to enjoy the luxuries of the upper class such as wealth, power, and fine dining, while the peasants raise their meat for them. The upper class is undoubtedly the British that rule over Ireland, and by eating their oppressed they show their power and superiority. Swift is commenting that British control in Ireland is as treacherous as people eating their own babies as means to survive.
1729, a Papist infected Ireland was being devoured by the taxes that the British placed on them. The taxes were turning into what once was a glorious place into ruins. Jonathan Swift, an Englishman and Irish sympathizer, realized that someone had to do something to wake up the British. This lead to the creation of A Modest Proposal, a pamphlet heavy with irony and juvenalian satire, which was how Jonathan Swift planned on compelling the British to do something about the poor situation in Ireland. His use of rhetorical devices gets his point across in an effective and powerful way.
Throughout the passage, swift uses different rhetorical devices to portray to his audience how badly the British are treating the Irish. He uses juxtaposition and logos in order to do so and uses satirical strategies to further prove his point. He proposes the idea of eating children to compare the situation between the Irish and the French as equally
Mohammed Ismail AP Language Composition Lyons, William December 9, 2014 Rhetorical Devices Used in Jonathan Swifts Modest Proposal The essay Modest Proposal, written by Jonathan Swift perhaps known better for his novel Gulliver’s travels wrote this piece, because during his time he addressed solutions to many contemporary social issues by writing them on pamphlets. Swift’s main purpose in writing this essay is to avert children from being less of a problem to their parents and the public. The author tries not addressing his subject directly, children, instead Swift introduces the concept of a market, livestock, breeders, etc., to address the overcrowding and poverty stricken children in Dublin, Ireland.
Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” is a very interesting take on how the Irish government should cure the famine that the country was then facing. However, the entire proposal was completely bizarre, and the whole point of the essay was to bring attention to the idea that they needed a solution to the all the problems they were experiencing but the proposal was definitely not it. He even had a strongly developed plan as to how his proposal would work which makes the reader feel as if he is serious about selling children, eating them, and/or using their skins as a fashion accessory; however, ultimately this proposal is not his true goal. Jonathon Swift skillfully used different styles of writing, such as imagery and irony, to show why the Irish should sell their children to the rich to eat.
Swift uses his satire as a way to draw attention to daily conditions that many families in Ireland are suffering from. His extreme plan of eating children is used as a way to draw the attention of the government towards helping improve the economy. By using irony Swift is able to help make his plan a more believable solution to invoke change. Even today Swift 's plan can be seen as a persuasive technique, using logic and statistics to convince the
Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” is a very interesting take on how the Irish government should cure the famine that the country was then facing. However, the entire proposal was completely bizarre, and the whole point of the essay was to bring attention to the idea that they needed a solution to the all the problems they were experiencing but the proposal was definitely not it. He even had a strongly developed plan as to how his proposal would work which makes the reader feel as if he is serious about selling children, eating them, and using their skins as a fashion accessory; however, ultimately this proposal was not his true goal. Jonathan Swift skillfully used different styles of writing, such as imagery and irony, to show why the
Jonathan Swift uses rhetorical devices, logical, ethical, as well as emotional appeals to highlight the difference between Swift’s satirical attitude and the narrator’s serious attitude concerning poverty and starvation. These various articles and different exerts from “A Modest Proposal” show the misleading content of the proposal in order to save Ireland and help them become a free country
Jonathan Swift is an enlightenment thinker that uses satire in his writings to bring awareness to the political power and mistreatment of the people of Ireland, ‘‘he was angry or in a fit of despair over Ireland 's economic condition’’(DeGategno). Swift uses satire throughout his proposal, by suggesting to the people of Ireland that they should harvest the little children of the poor. Swift stated that by making ‘‘Them Beneficial to the Public", Ireland would be in a better circumstance. Swift proposed that the poor children 's guardians should give birth to however many number of children as would be possible and offer them for sustenance. Instead of Swift addressing the issue straightforward, Swift used Satire ¬¬¬¬which employs irony sayings- one thing while meaning its opposite—in order to present an argument.
At the time when Swift’s proposal was made, Britain’s dictatorial reign in Ireland had left the nation in poverty and disarray. Criticising a nation was much easier to do in a joking tone or be harder to read rather than direct and upfront. Swift wanted to discuss these issues and found by writing in satire he could have the readers’ attention in way that a seriously written piece could not reach. Satire is present when Swift convinces the audience that he is an empathetic individual introducing the proposal with a sophisticated and compassionate manner beginning in the sentence, "I shall now therefore humbly propose my own thoughts, which I hope will not be liable to the least objection (1)," luring the reader into a sense of false trust as he begins the descriptions of the poor in Ireland. The reader is led to believe at first that this is a serious essay however it is not until deep into the proposal the reader can see how Swift uses satire to propose his thoughts found in the sentence, “a young healthy child well nursed, is, at a year old, a most delicious nourishing and wholesome food, whether stewed, roasted, baked, or boiled;” continuing on that, “no doubt that it will equally serve in a fricasie, or a ragoust (1).”
Critical Analysis of Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” In the work entitled “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathan Swift, the theme of social injustice is enhanced by the use of verbal irony to convey a charged message. The ambiguous title and introduction to Jonathan Swift’s masterpiece does little to prepare the reader for shocking content revealed later in the text. Swift’s work is powerful, poignant and persuasive because it strikes at the heart of the modern readers ethics, as it likely would have done for the author’s contemporary audiences. Jonathan Swift’s 1729 masterpiece is a satirical metaphor centered around the pervasive assertion, “the English are devouring the Irish.” Jonathan Swift gives a more comprehensive exordium concerning his work stating that is it “a modest proposal for preventing the children of poor people in Ireland, from being a burden on their parents and country, and for making them beneficial to the public (Swift 1199).