Satire of Modest Proposal

Topics: A Modest Proposal, Rhetoric, Satire Pages: 3 (958 words) Published: October 21, 2012
Satire at its Finest
A masterful satire, this is what Jonathon Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” is. The writing is used to construct a misunderstood proposal that comments on the social hardship of Ireland while blaming the government’s incompetence as well as the morals of the country. His proposal makes it visible to others that there is a need for social reform. From the beginning, it is not clear to the readers of what Swift’s true proposal actually is, but as it is being broken apart, one can see that the entire writing is full of sarcasm. The proposal itself speaks to the people who ignore the issues but who are also the ones that can fix them. As a proposed solution, that author states in the intro that “for preventing the children of poor people in Ireland from being a burden to their parents or country, for making them beneficial to the public” (Swift 239). Swift is bringing upon an attempt to find a cheap and easy method for bringing children of the poor into the commonwealth as well as turning the problem that is amuck, into its own solution. He uses analogies for the way people, a nation, can be devoured and how the nation is consuming itself and its own resources. “I grant this food will be somewhat dear, and therefore very proper for landlords who, as they have already devoured most of their parents, seem to have the best title to the children”(Swift 240). Swift has effective and ineffective ways of using different literary techniques that will intrigue one or leave them completely baffled with his proposal. At first glance of this writing, a reader can be nothing but appalled, though it causes one to think about realistic solutions and to take action. Swift’s proposal is effective by which he delivers his argument so efficiently and with such detail and use of sarcastic comparisons, exaggerations, and emotional appeals. His main solution to this problem is the practice of selling and eating children. “A young healthy child well nursed is at a year...
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