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Essay Samples > Book Review > A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift
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A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift

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Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal is a satirical work written in the 1729. The essay explores poverty in Ireland and the way it affects women and children. He suggests that the poor Irishmen may ease their economic troubles by selling their children as a meal for wealthy people. Swift mocks the heartless and cruel attitude towards the poor. The policies of the government are not right as there are numerous female beggars with children, who are wearing rags. Mothers are not able to work and they spend the whole day begging in the street in order to feed their offsprings. These children eventually grow up and become thieves or leave their country to join the army in neighboring countries (Terrence 21).

Everyone in the Irish kingdom agrees that the number of poor children contributes to the deplorable state. Anyone who would come up with an effortless and inexpensive solution of helping them become responsible in the society will be honored by having his statue set up in the country. Swift suggests that these children could be used as food by the people. He proposes cannibalism and says that this will prevent voluntary abortions and killing of kids by their mothers. Nonetheless, Swift was using satire and he did not actually promote infanticide and cannibalism. He was trying to provoke people to find solutions that did not have to be cheap and easy.

He exposes cruelty of unmarried women, who are afraid to Hve children born out of wedlock. Abortions and infanticide seem common in this society. Swift does come up with a cruel solution for the many poor children that include brewing and boiling them for food. He is able to get attention of numerous people in the trust that they will come up with a lasting solution (Johnson 55).

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