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Swift's A Modest Proposal is famous as an example of Satire. In what ways, and with what effects do you think he achieves his satirical aims?

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Asha Samrai Swift's A Modest Proposal is famous as an example of Satire. In what ways, and with what effects do you think he achieves his satirical aims? Swift's aim of his proposal is to expose the cruelty of the rich landlords of Ireland, who were not being aware of the poverty and suffering of the Irish people. Swift's proposal is an attempt to suggest a remedy of Ireland's situation by shocking those who are powerful enough to inflict change on Ireland's appalling circumstances. In order to do this Swift creates an alter ego, a persona who puts forth the ghastly proposal but in a logical fashion. Swift uses a 'Juvenalian' sort of satire, a way of getting at the reader without targeting them directly. Swift tries to expose the reality of Ireland in a discreet and delicate way. His definition of satire is 'Satire is a sort of glass, wherein beholders do generally discover everybody's face but their own.' ...read more.


is showing pity for the Irish and their 'Poor innocent babes' and gets the reader to go along with this fake pity for them. The persona seems to be immoral and his ideas to 'help prevent children from becoming burdens to their parents' are irrational. His solution is unexpected and a little revolting as the benefits would be tasty meals for the rich and more money for the poor, as the solution would be for the poor to sell their children to the rich for them to devour, which with the situation of the rich landlords in Ireland, is literal. Swift is clever as he manages to lure the reader into a 'Fake sense of security', where the reader is subconsciously agreeing to the problems of how bad the situation in Ireland is and the reader is also agreeing with Asha Samrai the persona that something needs to be done about it. ...read more.


These calculations produce logic that the persona uses that makes his solution plausible. The irony is discovered later on in the proposal when the persona excludes himself from the proposal. 'I have no children by which I can propose to get a single penny; the youngest being nine years old, and my wife past child-bearing.' He is saying that nobody can call him selfish or that he would gain from the proposal, but he was only finding a way for the poor to gain, but he was actually creating a menu that would be offered to himself and to others. This is where the reader would identify Swift's use of satire and how he is making the problems in Ireland aware to the public. Swift achieves his satirical aims well as the message comes together at the end, his sarcasm and his 'getting' at the rich upper class. He makes the reader believe that the situation in Ireland is bad and needs to be remedied soon before the situation becomes desperate. ...read more.

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