A Modest Proposal

Written by Jonathan Swift, this political satire may seem barbaric in it's concept. However, the outrageous concepts were introduced to point out the political machinations of the day to the general public. It is not for the tenderhearted as it is rather harsh.

1,755 Questions

What effect did Jonathan Swift's 'A Modest Proposal' have on Irish history?

"A Modest Proposal, published in 1729 in response to worsening conditions in Ireland, is perhaps the severest and most scathing of all Swift's pamphlets. The tract did not shock or outrage contemporary readers as Swift must have intended; its economics was taken as a great joke, its more incisive critiques ignored. Although Swift's disgust with the state of the nation continued to increase, A Modest Proposal was the last of his essays about Ireland."

What is Jonathan Swift's proposal in A Modest Proposal?

To eat the children of the poor to reduce the population of poor people and to ease their financial burden.

According to Projector Jonathan Swift who will benefit from his 'modest proposal'?

From what I can remember of my last reading of "A Modest Propsal" (which was a few years ago now), everyone would benefit - as the English will have a new and interesting delicacy to serve their guests and the poor Irish will have less mouths to feed and so more food to go around. But it has been a while.

By: ED Deveaux

In what way does a modest proposal fit the definition of satire?

It criticizes British attitudes toward poverty in Ireland, but in an indirect way. <APEX>

In A Modest Proposal by Jonathan Swift What does Swift say is a big problem in the cities and towns of Ireland?

Jonathan Swift wrote a satirical (Juvenalian) essay about troubled times in Ireland in the 1700's. To summarize the question, the papists were having to many children resulting in overpopulation and their parents were unable to provide for them. So there you have the Catholics having kids upon kids and then unable to feed and clothe them The poverty level was rising horrorifically and resulted in Ireland's economy to crash. So why not sell your children to the rich englishmen (or, "landlords") so they can eat them? The parents will experience a financial benefit and all of the above problems will basically be counteracted.

What is one of the reasons that Swift gives for his proposal?

Children would become valuable property.

Harvesting poor infants will reduce the number of Papists in the country.

Are short skirts and short shorts modest if you wear leggings under them?

Yes, they are.

But it depends to where. If its to school, then yes.

But to work, or a job interview, I wouldn't recommend it

Does A Modest Proposal contain any good recipes?

The author, Swift, mentioned little tykes, all in the form of satirical comment on the social order and politics of his time, in England.

In A Modest Proposal the proposal itself is?

The proposal is to eat the poor people's children, therefore decreasing the amount of poor citizens and also giving them money. It is extremely ironic, seeming as to how it's titled 'Modest' but eating 1year olds isn't modest at all.

What are rhetorical devices in a modest proposal?

Rhetoric is the art of persuasion. It helps a speaker/writer sway an audience in his/her favour. Jonathan Swift uses satire and irony in this work, yes, but the very heart of these two terms are founded on the original (Greek) areas of persuasion. There are three main rhetorical devices used in literature, and these are employed (masterfully) by Swift in his "A Modest Proposal."

Logos -- Does an argument or statement appeal to the audience's capacity for reason, logic, or sensibility? Can you trust the speaker's use of logic?

I.e: Will cannibalism actually benefit the masses or the economy?

Ethos -- Is an argument ethical? Does it adhere to the socially accepted norms or propriety, or decency? Can you trust a speaker's motives?

I.e: Is it better for children to starve to death, or for them to be slaughtered in early life? Which is more acceptable?

Pathos -- Does an argument appeal to you, the speaker? Does it strike a chord with you, does it evoke any emotional response, and how so?

I.e: Can we sleep at night if this "modest" proposal becomes a norm?

As mentioned above, these three devices are always at play with satire and irony; they are the "backbone" of both these terms.

Remember: Irony: when the intended meaning of a statement is OPPOSITE of the words used. This also can be called sarcasm. I.e: "I REALLY like that shirt (not). Or, England is sucking us dry, we might as well beat them at their own game, (Which is the satirical message of "A Modest Proposal." Swift was not literally suggesting cannibalism, but he was using this narrative to illustrate just how England was figuratively consuming all the assets in Ireland).

What happens to the elderly in a modest proposal?

The elderly are not the focus at all in "A Modest Proposal." The focus is the brith rate. Swift never (ironically) suggests killing off the aged, but selling off the young in order for the Irish to have a commodity all their own.

What are some rhetorical strategies used in A Modest Proposal?

Paradox : The title imply modesty and simplicity while the actual subject matter is...well cannibalism

Juuxtoposition : Swift begins with reasonable statements that most readers would agree with "whoever could find out a fair, cheap, and easy method of making these children sound, useful members of the commonwealth would deserve so well of the public as to have his statue set up for a preserver of the nation" and then juxtaposes his idea that the children should be used as food.

Sarcasm and Satire : he made this pamphlet which features ideas for solving the poverty issue that arent to be taken seriously, following previous pamphlets he'd written that were serious and hd real ideas for the issue that society never took seriously.

Which sentence best describes the narrator's purpose in writing this proposal?

He is proposing a solution to the problem of Irish parents who cannot financially support their children.

Why did Swift publish A Modest Proposal and Gulliver's Travels anonymously?

Because they contained controversial political views

Because they could have gotten him in trouble with the government

The narrator of Jonathan Swift's A Modest Proposal is?

The narrator of Jonathan Swift's "A modest Proposal" is the proposer.

What is one way that Swift uses irony in a modest proposal?

He creates a distinction between what he says and what he really means.

What are some modest proposal paper ideas?

Try this site. They have many answers.

What do you do if you feel uncomfortable with your ex-spouse when you have to be together briefly due to the needs of your disabled adult son and you have both remarried?

I think you should get down on bended knees and thank the heavens for gracing you with this situation. You have a disabled son, so two mature men are getting along so there isn't further misery between your son and two grown men arguing and fighting. It appears that your son is everything in your life, but he is also your exes son and so, it's time for you to grow up and the 3 of you work towards making this child as happy as possible. If your ex is causing problems, then you should be talking to your husband first about it, then to your ex and try (for the sake of your son) to smooth the rough edges out. This is an unusual case and I would normally tell you to tell your ex to move on, but that's impossible. You are also very lucky that your ex even cares about his son as many don't. I am sure in your marriage with raising a disabled son you and your exe's nerves were shot because of the stress and worry and thus, your marriage broke up, but that doesn't mean to say he doesn't love his son very much. You feel uncomfortable because it's normal to want to leave the past in the past and not drag it along with you. I also have an ex and have been married 34 years to my wonderful husband, but, at one time it would have made me feel uncomfortable. You just never know if the ex will fill the head of your present husband with their rendition of how life was with you. Of course this is an immature way of looking at things because your husband has chosen you, taken on the responsibility of your son with disabilities and that's proof of love right there. If the 3 of you are getting along then try not to feel so uncomfortable. Perhaps stay away from "close encounters" for a bit, until you are more use to it. Also, put your son first and let him know you and your husband are getting along with his father. To children it doesn't matter if mom or dad is married to another mate, all they know pure and simple is "mom and dad!" More input: * This is my situation. At first I couldn't see the "blessing side" of this predicament. To have both fathers working to assist their son together, with all the hate and hard feelings put aside is beautiful. And I see how thankful I should be that my son is now in the center of two loving families. I can allow the two men to chat all they want now that I can see the whole picture and the blessing it really is. You are one very wise lady and a great mother. Your son is obviously the light of your life and here is this "angel" bringing everyone together in peace. I once heard such a wonderful quote I typed it out and put it on my fridge and it said: IF YOU CAN'T FORGIVE A PERSON, THEN THAT PERSON STILL HAS CONTROL OVER YOU. Although it would be wonderful if your son was well, but as cruel as it sometimes seems, this little angel has brought wisdom and peace to your families (OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF BABES!) Don't miss one blessed moment of your son. Good luck God Bless Marcy