Jonathan Swift: Misguided and Incorrect Criticisms
Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) is quite possibly the greatest satirist in the history of English literature, and is without question the most controversial. Infuriated by the moral degradation of society in the eighteenth century, Swift wrote a plethora of bitter pieces attacking man's excessive pride, and the critical reception has been one of very mixed reviews. While few question Swift's skill as a satirist, his savage, merciless attacks on the foibles of mankind have led more than one critic to level negative accusations against him. His beliefs have led to allegations of heresy, an anti-government attitude and a devotion to freeing man's right to passion. His most famous work, Gulliver's Travels, has resulted in attacks on his writing style, and his cruel, invidious assaults on sin have led to cries of egotist, misanthrope and sadist. Every one of these accusations is false. Jonathan Swift's critics are misguided and inc...