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Reader! Reader!

Literary fiction, classics, dystopian, history, memoir, prize winners, and of course the 1001 books. You really might catch me reading anything!

Currently reading

Empire of Cotton: A Global History
Sven Beckert
Progress: 220/656 pages

A Modest Proposal and other satirical works

A Modest Proposal and Other Satirical Works - Jonathan Swift

This small collection contains 5 of Swift's satirical pieces. "A Modest Proposal" is definitely the best of them. It is strong, the writing is deadpan, and it is also the easiest for a modern reader to understand. It is excellent. I do know that people read it and don't understand it is satire. It is satire! Swift is not actually suggesting people eat children. (The ridiculous policies for Ireland's poor came during the potato famine--and even then the eating of children was not a policy.)


Other essays in this collection:

The Battle of the Books (sections are missing; references many of Swift's contemporaries, who are generally unknown now)

A Meditation Upon a Broomstick (short and clever)

A Discourse Concerning the Mechanical Operation of the Spirit (not my cup of tea, but I am not sure I have the background needed to fully understand)

An Argument Against Abolishing Christianity in England (this was my second favorite and is very tongue in cheek; I am not clear how Swift actually felt, or if it even matters)