A Modest Proposal Commmentary

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Jonathan Swift's uses satirical language in “A Modest Proposal" to criticize the affluent inhabitants of Ireland as the reason why Ireland is a “melancholy object”. The imagery initially unveils the condition of Ireland then supports satire by helping to visualize barbaric examples used to ironically benefit off the "burden child". The capitalism of skin and flesh on impoverished carcasses to profit is completely contradictory and ironic to the title “A Modest Proposal”. He sets up the reader by emphasizing how immediate a solution is required for the critical situation Ireland is under and how advantageous his proposals are; only to be slammed by criticism and irony.

The writer uses strong and revealing imagery to elicit the “deplorable state of the Kingdom”. He achieves this by stating how “downhearted” it is to set foot in town and by illustrating the “helpless females and their numerous progeny all in rags begging for “alms”. By exploiting the female sex and helpless children, his judicious language choices evokes pity and convinces how important it is to make the children “sound” and “useful”. He also states that the children will inevitably become useless to the commonwealth by “growing up to become thieves or fight for the pretender in Spain” to intimidate an outcome against this and the “preserver of the nation” to find a solution to this will be greatly valued. By judicious language and pitiful imagery he indirectly criticizes the “deplorable state of the kingdom” on their failure as caretakers of the needy.

To all the immediate predicaments of Ireland, the “advantages” laid by Swift’s “scheme” evoke a sense of relief for the impoverished. As instead of a “charge upon parents” the minors will “contribute to the feeding and partly clothing of thousands”; the tone of doing so is contradictory to the methods and imagery visualized later on to achieve this. As “several schemes of other projector have grossly mistaken in computation” he draws his own...
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