Compare and Contrast the Fictional and Non-Fictional Works of Jonathan Swift

Compare and Contrast the Fictional and Non-Fictional Works of Jonathan Swift


We will write a custom essay sample on
Compare and Contrast the Fictional and Non-Fictional Works of Jonathan Swift
or any similar topic specifically for you
Do Not Waste
Your Time

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.

More Essay Examples on Compare Rubric

Jonathan swift, who lived between the year 1667 and 1745 was an Anglo Irish comedian, satirist, novelist, political pamphleteer, poet and a member of the clergy whose works involved both verses and styles mainly the horatian and the juvenalian styles - Compare and Contrast the Fictional and Non-Fictional Works of Jonathan Swift introduction. Swift was a defender of social justice who devoted his life to defending the poor people of Ireland especially from the British government. He is remembered for several works including the battle of the books among others. Swift is known as the leading style comedian in the English language however he is known less for his poetry. (Robert, Greenberg and William, Bowman 73).

Fictional work involves the description of works that have been made up and does not exist in real life situation that relate to the ideas and inventions in novels and movies. On the other hand non fictional works involves the description of real world events.

The fictional works of swift included books such as Gulliver’s travels which was very popular and alone was enough to secure him a place in the history of English literature. During his celebrated travel, Gulliver was captured by miniature people who wage war on each other due to religious disagreement over how to crack eggs. During this travel Gulliver is also sexually assaulted by giants. This essay seems to be very popular with children though it is meant for adults and explains the failings and imperfections of man. This work was a classic fictional satire written by Jonathan swift. A part from this fictional work, swift published other fictional works which discussed issues related to politics and religion in Ireland. The fictional works of swift included both savage and comical satires which were all covered with fantastic humor and imagination. (Baker, Donald 19)

Swifts fictional satire in addition, was a tropical social satire. This mainly involved a work of propaganda whereby swift wanted to reveal the outcomes of failing or refusing to be reasonable by human beings. This satire by swift is still widely read universally and remains mainly children’s favorite.

In comparing swift’s fictional satire, Gulliver’s travels with his non fictional satire modest proposal, it is notable that both the essay discussed some critical issues affecting the lives of the population in Ireland. Nevertheless the two essays are contrasting in the issue of discussion. For instance the fictional satire Gulliver’s travels mainly discusses the political and religious issues in Ireland while the non fictional essay discusses the economic dilemma in Ireland and suggests possible solution to the dilemmas. (Phiddian, Robert 5)

Swifts anthology of fictional works contains several satirical works including a tale of a tub which was divided into the tale, the battle of the books and discourse which mainly dealt with the mechanical operation of the spirit. A tale of tub advocated for a middle path based on reason and common sense. On the other hand in the modest proposal he advocated for the sale and consumption of the babies from poor families in Irish as a delicacy by the rich to alleviate the twin problems of over population and hunger.  In addition it contains political pamphlets, pieces for the popular press, poems and a generous selection from his selection.

Another fictional satire of swift, a tale of tub was a religious satire which involved a simple narrative of a father who had triplet children and when he died leaves every triplet a coat which was meant to grow with them. This satire involved arguments against eradicating Christianity. The narrator of the narrative in this satire argues for the conservation of Christian religion as a social requirement. (Baker, Donald 92)

In comparison both the fictional and non fictional works of swift involves the argument against abolishing Christianity. This implies that swift in both his works that is fictional and non fictional works he showed his value from Christianity and was therefore against its abolition.

There is a however a contrast in the two satires. For instance, in his fictional work, a tale of a tub, swift relates the conservation of Christianity with the conservation of the coats that were left for the triplet children to grow up with. His argument implies that just as the triplets were going to preserve the coats as a basic necessity in their lives and grow up with them, the society should also preserve Christianity in the same way and grow into maturity with it as social necessity of the society.

In can be noted that in his fictional satire, a legend of tub (non), swift argues for the preservation of Christianity as a social necessity of the society while in his non fictional satire a modest proposal he argues that the people of Irish can solve their poverty problem by breeding their children as food for the rich. (Baker, Donald 102)

The non fictional works of Jonathan Swift incorporated A legend of a tub, an dispute against abolishing Christianity, the periodical to Stella, the assessor papers, the drapier’s mail and a humble suggestion which reflected swift as a complex, captivating man who is contentious in his own sunlight hours and the subject matter of significant disagreement to date.

The non fictional work of swift, modest proposal for instance is a satirical essay which he wrote and published in the year 1729. This essay by swift was meant to attack the British who had attempted to further devalue the economy of Irish. This work however did not gain any political change, it served to highlight the injustices and inhumanity that6 was perpetuated on the people of Irish. In this essay swift seems to propose that the insolvent Irish might get rid of their economic dilemma by selling their children as food to rich men and women. The non fictional essay was mainly meant to prevent the children of poor individuals in Ireland from becoming burden to their parents and country but for making them beneficial to their parents and the public as a whole.

In this essay swift explores the common methods of argument including appealing to the authority. His arguments are prepared in the then current events, which included utilizing common discrimination against rapists and pointing out their depredations of England. In addition swift tackles possible oppositions like the depopulation of Ireland and a litany of other solutions which he discharges as unrealistic.

Swift’s essay modest proposal is largely known to be one of the furthermost examples of unrelenting irony in the history of English language. This is because at the beginning of the essay, swift illustrates the predicament of starving population in Ireland making the reader not to prepare for swift’s surprising solution when he talks about a young healthy child who is well nursed with a most delicious nourishing food . (Phiddian, Robert 56)

In his essay, modest proposal, swift was not mainly aiming at the conditions of Ireland but the can do spirit of the days made the people of Ireland to formulate several irrational systems that was to solve social and economic problems. In addition his essay aimed at the scheming way in which people perceived the poor in designing their projects.

Swift’s modest proposal is included in many literature programs as one of the early modern western satire. Additionally the modest proposal serves as an outstanding introduction to the notion and use of argumentative language, resulting to its inclusion in both secondary and post secondary essay courses. It is included in several comparative and universal literature and courses of history and also in other disciplines such as arts, humanities as well as social sciences.

Further swift’s non fictional work show that the Great Vowel Shift was only partially carried out in Ireland. The reason for this being that the diversities taken to Ireland during the twelfth century could not have the shift and was later only implemented in part.

Swifts play, a tale of pub involves the exploits of three triplets which represents the main threads of Christianity. (Phiddian, Robert 89)

There is a comparable use of satire and irony in swift’s Gulliver’s travels and a modest proposal. In both the two works, the most important fictitious policies used are satire and the use of sarcasm. When comparing these two works the reader can see how rapid are using sarcasm, satire and satirical situations to point out harms in society and to remark on them without addressing the reader directly. In both modest proposal and Gulliver’s travel satire and irony are used by swift to achieve the same goals. Nevertheless, being of different structures. In a humble proposal and in Gulliver’s voyage, the use of satire varies.

The use of satire by Jonathan swift in a modest proposal is meant to make the reader identify the kind of cold, inhumanity and rationalism when used to address social problems like poverty and overpopulation. The irony in this case is represented through characterization a unpretentious suggestion.

In Gulliver’s travel, the use of satire and irony is represented by the bureaucracy of England where the monarchy had a direct authority even in the dominion of law, however bureaucracy was developing. Swift satirizes this in Gulliver’s travels by the Lilliputians who take widespread record of all Gulliver’s possessions. (Baker, Donald 1957)


The fictional and non fictional works of Jonathan swift indeed have some concepts in common, nevertheless some concepts are contrasting. Jonathan swift being a satirical worker, we realize that both his fictional and non fictional works involve the use of satire and satirical situations. Additionally Swift’s fictional and non fictional works both involve the use of irony. However the fictional and non fictional works of Jonathan swift are different in structures and in the issues being discussed giving the differences in his works.

Works cited

Robert, Greenberg and William, Bowman. The Writings of Jonathan Swift: convincing Texts,   Backgrounds and Criticism.  New York: Norton, 1973.

Baker, Donald C “Tertullian and Swift’s A Modest Proposal”, The Classical Journal 52: 219-220           1957.

 Phiddian, Robert Have You Eaten Anything yet? ,The Reader in “A Modest Proposal”, Studies            in English Literature, 1500-1900 36 (3): 603-621, 1996.

Smith, Charles Kay “Toward a Participatory Rhetoric: Swift’s Gulliver’s travels “, College         English 30 (2): 135-149 1968.

Wittkowsky, George “Swift’s Modest Proposals: The Biography of an Early Georgian    Pamphlet”, Journal of the History of Ideas 4 (1): 75-104, 1943.


Haven’t Found A Paper?

Let us create the best one for you! What is your topic?

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.

Haven't found the Essay You Want?

Get your custom essay sample

For Only $13/page

Eric from Graduateway Hi there, would you like to get an essay? What is your topic? Let me help you