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How effective is 'Modest Proposal' by Jonathon Swift

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How effective is 'Modest Proposal' by Jonathon Swift A 'Modest Proposal' is written by Gulliver's travel book author Jonathon Swift, and was written in 1729. Jonathon Swift was born in 1667 and died in 1745. It's a proposal which swift gave to the Irish government to stop tolerance in poverty, in Ireland. By 1729, something had to be done, regardless of how drastic it was, therefore a proposal was written. The proposal was meant to 'shock' the Irish people, but the Irish government ignored his 'modest proposal'. Due to these harsh taxes and other laws passed from distant England, Ireland was quickly becoming a land of the starving. The proposal was a political pamphlet sent to the government of the Irish and the British enquiring about the Irish people and the status they were currently in at the time. Swift at the beginning was sent out of England by the church and sent into exile in Ireland. This is where swift first seen the horror of poverty, famine, and plenty of beggers, in Ireland. Swift also uses his own individual serious proposal to the Irish government. Swift was also an ex-vicar, so he does know a little about religion in England. Swift also suggests a number of ways of improving the situation in Ireland but the government of Ireland ignore his very valuable suggestions. ...read more.


Swift then says in paragraph 15 that a good fat child carcass would cost around 10 shillings, so they would earn a reasonable amount of profit. Swift then, in the last paragraph says he will make no profit out of this business proposal as his youngest child is 9 yrs of age and his wife is past child bearing. This is all the information that swift gives about his proposal. Throughout the whole essay Swift says that he has thoroughly researched this idea. I have shown this above in this paragraph by showing quotations of swift working out calculations and making estimations. I will now look at how swift in his proposal suggests of any argumentative points towards the proposal. Swift firstly starts by using irony and yet arguing his point by saying "object to those who walk through this great town" on line 1 of the proposal. He basically is saying that Ireland is a great country with great potential but yet there are many beggars and things have to be sorted out before it to late. Swift is arguing this point as he is emphasising the point that Ireland does require severe improvements. Other argumentative points that Swift makes are in the 4th paragraph of the proposal where he begins to say "one year old that I propose to provide for them in such a manner". ...read more.


If a writer uses sarcastic words incorrectly the reader could understand it like a bad joke or even think that writer is mad. Satire can shock people because it often presents foolish ideas. This is basically what swift does do in this proposal. Swift does shock the reader as he says about killing peoples own children and eating them or selling them to get out of poverty. At the time this was the only option that arised. I personally felt that swift did go to the extreme and was a bit vile and sick in his satire in the proposal. This basically shows how the satire can make swift look foolish, mad and a bit of a joke. This ends the satirical section. Overall I feel the proposal by swift does eventually go to the extreme and causes the reader to be off putt by that. I also feel that the government were right to ignore the proposal and think of another option. I think this because swift's option would cause Ireland to become out of hand and there would be many cannibals there as well and this would inevitably cause violence and mayhem. Additionally the overall affect of the proposal is quite touching in the sense that parents would have to sacrifice their new born just for a minute sum of money. This concludes my essay of the effectiveness of the modest proposal. ?? ?? ?? ?? Billy Sagoo English coursework 11 SYH ...read more.

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