A Modest Proposal - Research Article from Literature and Its Times

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A Modest Proposal

by Jonathan Swift

As dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Ireland, Jonathan Swift saw firsthand the devastating consequences of famine on the poorer segments of the Irish population. Conditions in Ireland reached a crisis point in 1729. Thousands of men, women, and children suffered homelessness and poverty as the result of crop failures, high unemployment, rising prices, and trade restrictions imposed by the British government. Responding to the public outcry for a remedy, Swift wrote "A Modest Proposal" as a satire-a literary work that ridicules a subject through the use of irony and wit and is intended to create amusement, contempt, or anger in the reader. The essay blasted those whom he believed to be responsible for Ireland's state of affairs-the British government, corrupt landlords and merchants, and Absentees (those who fled the country in 1714 when George I took control of the government). He also...

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This section contains 3,394 words
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