Young Adult

Gulliver's Travels

Jonathan Swift’s novel Gulliver’s Travels delivers an intricate, biting critique of 18th-century Europe and humanity in general. First published in England in 1726, the novel satirizes the travel narrative, a popular genre in the literature of the Augustan period. The story details the adventures of the intelligent and observant, yet relatable everyman, Lemuel Gulliver. Constantly pulled to a life of travel and adventure, Gulliver spends very little time in his hometown of Nottinghamshire, England. However, his eye-opening experiences abroad allow Gulliver to comment on the various problems plaguing European society, everywhere from empty scientific advancement to the horrors of the colonial mentality. Due to many controversial topics, Gulliver’s Travels was not published with all of Swift’s sarcastic and thought-provoking criticism until 1735 when it was re-published with the original content in Dublin. Among many things, Gulliver’s Travels is a story about perspective. Swift uses his wit and insight to take readers on a journey that explores the strangest and darkest aspects of human nature from all sides.

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