Gulliver’s Travels Important Long Questions and Answers

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Gulliver's Travels Questions and Answers
Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift

Q. Analyse the Character of Houyhnhnms in Gulliver’s Travels.

For a long time the fourth voyage of Gulliver’s Travels was regarded as the outburst of a misanthrope who took pleasure in degrading human nature. Swift was hostile to all doctrines of the natural self-sufficiency of man; and the fourth voyage embodies that hostility. But while the object of attack in this voyage is established, it is not immediately clear, from the voyage itself, where any positive attitude is implied in the Houyhnhnms or in the other characters. There is much in the Houyhnhnms that we find to be unpleasant and unacceptable. The arguments offered by the speakers at the Assembly of the Houyhnhnms, about the nature and future fate of Gulliver and the Yahoos, for instance, show the characteristic coldness of the Houyhnhnm’s race. Again, the Houyhnhnm to whom Gulliver refers as his “master”, shows the characteristic self-satisfaction of his race when he criticizes Gulliver’s physical qualities. This self-satisfaction is, indeed, carried here to the point of absurdity. Gulliver’s master criticizes the flatness of Gulliver’s face, the prominence of his nose, his eyes placed directly in front so that he cannot look on either side without turning his head, the need for Gulliver to lift one of his fore-feet to his mouth in order to feed himself, and so on. This attitude of the Houyhnhnm master certainly goes against his race. … (Read More)

Q. Discuss Gulliver’s Voyage to Laputa.

The book called Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift is a satire on four aspects of man: the physical, the political, the intellectual, and the moral. The book is also a brilliant parody of travel literature; and it is at once science fiction and a witty parody of science fiction .It is a great comic masterpiece, a fact which readers of solemn temperaments often fail to recognize. Gulliver’s third voyage is more scattered than the others, involving stops at Laputa, Balnibarbi, Glubbdubdrib, Luggnagg, and Japan. Swift completed the account of this voyage after that of the fourth voyage was already written, and there are hints that it was assembled from notes that Swift had made for an earlier satire of abstract knowledge. Nonetheless, it plays a crucial role in the novel as a whole. Whereas the first two voyages are mostly satires of politics and ethics, the third voyage extends Swift’s attack to science, learning, and abstract thought, offering a critique of excessive rationalism, or reliance on theory, during the Enlightenment. … (Read More)

Q. Compare the Yahoos and Houyhnhnms in Gulliver’s Travels.

In “Gulliver’s Travels”, Lemuel Gulliver visits the semi-tranquil, semi-chaotic land of Houyhnhnyms. Its chief inhabitants are talking horses. These horses are gentle, virtuous, rational and vegetarian. The land of the Houyhnhnms is, like Brobdingnag, a utopia. It is an unspoiled Shangri-la. Most unlike the war zones of “1984”. There is no stealing, no lies and no disease in the land of the Houyhnhnms. These vices exist only among the Yahoos. The Yahoos are inferred as savage, cave man like, aggressive, excitable and carnivorous beings. They are, without question, a parody of humans. The “hard” school of criticism contends that the Houyhnhnms are Swift’s ideal while the Yahoos are his satiric representation of actual mankind at its most despicable. There seems to be no obvious way to reconcile this con- tention with the claims of the “soft” school that quite the contrary is true; that the Houyhnhnms represent Swift’s satire of an inhuman, unattainable rationality and of the deists’ belief in rational, benevo- lent man, while the Yahoos are placed at the opposite end of the scale – the intention being to show man’s middle state between irra- tional brute and creature of pure rationality. … (Read More)

Q. What are Gulliver’s Misanthropic Views in Book 4?

Gulliver’s Travels by the Anglo-Irish writer and clergyman Jonathan Swift is not a fanciful product of a deranged mind. Gulliver’s Travels is considered a serious literature unique in its universal appeal. A careful look into the story shows a well-knitted structure, a well-defined characterization probing deep into human psychology. “I hate and detest that animal called man…” This is a portion of a sentence from a letter of the world famous satirist Jonathan Swift to Alexander Pope. “The Gulliver’s Travels” is Swift’s masterpiece, a universal satire satirizing the mankind as a whole. Gulliver’s Travels examines human nature through a misanthropic lens and through satire examines the changes English society was undergoing. His critical work has caused a lot of discord as a satirical commentary on the political and social issues of England in the eighteenth century. Gulliver’s trips lead him to places of opposite societies causing an examination of human nature itself. While the character of Gulliver eventually reveals himself as a misanthrope, the author Jonathan Swift does not. Actually there is very little in Gulliver’s Travels, including in the fourth part, to signify that he shares Gulliver’s outlook on the hopelessness of humanity. The fourth voyage of Gulliver’s Travels is easily read as an attack on the human species because of the clear satire regarding the Yahoos. … (Read More)

Q. What Genre does Gulliver’s Travels belong to and why?

Gulliver’s Travels, or Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World. In Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of Several Ships is a 1726 prose satire by the AngloIrish writer and clergyman Jonathan Swift, satirising both human nature and the “travellers’ tales” literary subgenre. It is Swift’s best known full-length work, and a classic of English literature. It is an adventure story (in reality, a misadventure story) involving several voyages of Lemuel Gulliver, a ship’s surgeon, who, because of a series of mishaps en route to recognized ports, ends up, instead, on several unknown islands living with people and animals of unusual sizes, behaviours, and philosophies, but who, after each adventure, is somehow able to return to his home in England where he recovers from these unusual experiences and then sets out again on a new voyage. … (Read More)

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