A Modest Proposal: Irony

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Jonathan Swift's "A Modest Proposal" is one of the finest books to read. This essay was written in response to the issue of overpopulation and the burden—both political and social—that poor people's children in Ireland posed to the government. This proposal should not be taken literally. Swift's suggestion is that these children be fattened and sold as delicacies to the wealthy. Taking such a suggestion seriously would encourage cannibalism among a population. Swift cites overpopulation as the key issue in his text, which he blames on the weak. He states that these children burden the economy of the nation and bring with them social ills like theft and unnecessary street begging (Swift, 65). Today's society seems to be suffering from the same diseases as that of Jonathan swift's time. Overpopulation and poverty have become a global issue that needs a fair, cheap and easy way to deal with. Though a satire, a modest proposal is presented with feasible economics to curtail the problem. Swift proposes to make the problem resolve itself. Swift's proposal seems to curtail the problem of overpopulation, end other evils like abortion while at the same time earning the poor mothers some revenue.
Swift's central message is that the problems of overpopulation, poverty and social evils like theft and economic stratification should not be left unattended; instead, a workable and permanent solution ought to be sought. Even though swift presents his solution of cannibalism with well calculated economics and vivid reasoning, he does not really mean it. Swift was known to be a dedicated critic to the government and this satire was meant for the same purpose. Once the satire in it is realized, this peace can be taken seriously and solutions to these escalating problems like better healthcare, family planning tactics be implemented.

Works cited
Swift, Jonathan. A modest proposal and other satirical works. Courier Corporation, 2012.

January 20, 2022



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