Gulliver's Travels Essay

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In the following excerpt, Todd draws parallels between the strange and alien sights Gulliver experiences during his travels and the popular entertainments of Bartholomew Fair, an area of early eighteenth-century London which put dwarfs, giants, and other "monsters" on display. The critic shows how Gulliver is similarly treated as a monster during his journey, and argues that Gulliver accepts and even encourages this role in order to distinguish himself as an individual.

When Gulliver first appears on the shores of the several remote nations he visits, the inhabitants respond to his monstrosity much as Londoners responded to monsters at Bartholomew Fair. The Lilliputians show "a thousand Marks of Wonder and Astonishment" when they first see him, and when he rises to his feet, "the Noise and Astonishment of the People … [were] not to be expressed." In Brobdingnag, Gulliver "was shewn ten Times a Day to the Wonder and...

(read more from the Critical Essay #2 section)

This section contains 3,753 words
(approx. 10 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Gulliver's Travels Study Guide
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Gulliver's Travels from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.