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Gulliver's Travels

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Claudia De Cesare

on 3 June 2013

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Transcript of Gulliver's Travels

Across the world
of Literature Dublin Jonathan Swift 1667-1745 Irish father and English mother Started to work as a secretary for Sir Temple, who was a Whig and encouraged him to write his first satirical works -The battle of books
-A tale of a Tub
-Gulliver's Travels
-A modest proposal Bristol Considered as a Controversial writer
Morbid attitude of mankind
Found in irony and satire the means that suited his temperament and interests Sails on 4th May 1699 1st book After 6 months his ship is wrecked somewhere in the South Pacific Ocean Then he is cast upon the shore of Lilliput, where he falls asleep, here he meets the Lilliputians, who are only 6 inches tall, They carry his huge body to the city center and house him in an unused temple, Gulliver gradually learns their customs and language. After many amusing experiences he manage to return to England 2nd Book On 20th June 1702, Gulliver sails for India, but he finds himself in Brobdingnag, a country Swift located in Alaska GIANTS twelve times as tall as Gulliver His size causes him a lot of misadventures: he must escape from rats as big as lions and wasps as big as birds. Later on, he is sold to the Queen and finally becomes the King's pet. He enjoys talking with Gulliver about the system of governement in England and Europe. One day, Gulliver's cage is lifted by a huge bird and dropped in the middle of the Ocean. Here the natives are He is rescued by a ship and returns to England 3rd Book This time Gulliver's ship is attacked by pirates, they set him adrift on a small boat. He finds himself on the flying island of Laputa, whose inhabitants are absent-minded astronomers, philosophers and scientists. Gulliver visits their capital, Lagado, and its academy, where absurd experiments are carried out, such as turning human excrement into food. Then the island drops him on Japan and he manages to go back to England. 4th Book This time Gulliver is on the island inhabited by the Houyhnhnms, which are horses endowed with reason that rule over the Yahoos, a specie of animals resembling human beings. Gulliver really admires Houyhnhnms for their intelligence, but at the same time he is ashamed of its similarity to the Yahoos. When the horses banish him, he builds a canoe and leaves for England. BUT Once home, he cannot stand anymore to stay with humans. So, he goes to live in the stable with animals, which reminds him the nobility of the Houyhnhnms Printed in 1726 Impulsive
Cannot resist the urge to travel At the end he is completely different from the person he was at the beginning. At the beginning In the first voyage In the second and
thrird voyage In the fourth voyage Middle-aged
well educated
sensible careful observer
takes care of his family runs his business prudently Gulliver is the typical European: has experience of the world fully supports his culture He recognises the autority of the king and the ceremonies of the court. Only when circumstances force him to think, Gulliver begins to develop a critical awareness of the limitations of European values. These first critical insights are only temporary because when he returns, he quickly fits into European life again. The critical awareness becomes deeper even if he doesn't question European values seriously and still defends its history. This time it takes him longer to readjust to european life after his return home. Gulliver's transformation becomes complete, and when he returns he can no longer take part in European society, not even with his family and friends. Gulliver London Swift's Satire The most common interpretation of Swift's contemporaries, and nowadays too, was that Swift's main satiric point was to ridicule the Europeans pretensions to rationality. Swift's work is seen in many different ways: a tale for children, a political allegory, a parody of voyage literature The moral satire The choice of metaphor in each book serves more particularly the various point of Swift's satiric vision.
The Lilliputians:
The islanders are small but full of self importance and quite dangerous although they are small. It has been argued the Lilliputians represent the English, their size represents the small size of England compared to the rest of the world but shows how powerful the English were at the time. Swift describes the Lilliputians as pompous in the novel which some would consider an English characteristic in the 18th Century.
The Brobingnagians:
They are physically a lot larger than Gulliver, however, they are less threatening than the small Lilliputians. They do not have gunpowder, as they do not see the point of it and the King is upset at Gulliver’s description of Europe, considering Europeans to be violent. However, although the Brobingnagians are large they do not realise their potential power. This could represent some of the larger countries in the world in the 18th Century who did not appreciate their power although they could have proved to be a potential threat to England.The Laputans:Are described in part 3 of Gulliver’s Travels were highly intelligent and spent a great deal of time studying but failed to produce anything productive. The repulsion that Gulliver shows for men, and their degradation is the same one that feels Swift for his contemporaries and, in particular, because of the English people of his time.In this work stands out the perfect blend of allegory and critique of values​​, institutions, religions, sciences and culture, between fantasy and despair, all expressed in a classical style. The genius of its author erupts from this very balanced complexity, so that the novel has become a masterpiece of world literature. Now... The Laputans:
Are described in part 3 of Gulliver’s Travels were highly intelligent and spent a great deal of time studying but failed to produce anything productive. The Laputans were so obsessed with knowledge they were oblivious to their compatriots and even their oven wives’ affairs. This could represent the government in England at the time who Swift may have considered were removed from their people and unconcerned by the needs of the common man. It could also represent the scientists in the 18th Century.
The Houyhnhnms:
The Houyhnhnms represent a successful society which benefits all of the Houyhnhnms and considers them all equal. The Houynhnms are reasonable and have decent principles, however, they are not human. On the other hand the Yahoos represent all that is bad with human beings as they are uncivilized, greedy and violent.
The individual over society:
On each island Gulliver meets at least one person who treats him with respect and assists him. Even the sailor Don Pedro de Mendez, who Gulliver considers a Yahoo, is still generous and pleasant to Gulliver. This shows how an individual can possess all the positive aspects of human beings such as kindness, respect, selflessness and charity. Therefore an individual can rise above politics and religion in any society. Books for children Movies TV and radio programmes
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