- Explain the role and significance of the ‘Publisher to the Reader’ in the novel.
The ‘Publisher to the Reader’ serves as an introduction to the novel, in which the publisher explains that the story is a true account of the author’s travels, but that certain names and locations have been changed to protect the identities of the individuals involved. The role of the ‘Publisher to the Reader’ is to provide context for the reader, and to establish the novel as a satirical work that is based on real events.
- Explain and discuss why the narrator gives specific historical information about himself at the beginning of the novel.
The narrator gives specific historical information about himself at the beginning of the novel in order to establish credibility and to provide context for the reader. This information is intended to make the reader believe that the story is a true account of the narrator’s travels, which will make the satirical elements of the novel more effective.
- Among other things, this novel is a game of perspective and relativity. Give examples from Lilliput and Brobdingnag.
In Lilliput, Gulliver is seen as a giant, while the inhabitants of Lilliput are seen as tiny. In Brobdingnag, the opposite is true, with Gulliver appearing as a small creature, and the inhabitants of Brobdingnag seen as giants. This is a game of perspective and relativity that serves to satirize the way in which people view themselves and others in relation to their own size and position in society.
- What are the first reactions of the people of Lilliput to Gulliver?
The people of Lilliput are initially frightened and awestruck by Gulliver’s size, but they soon begin to see him as a useful tool for their own purposes. They begin to use Gulliver to their advantage, putting him to work in various tasks and asking for his help in resolving disputes.
- What kinds of things does Gulliver ask from the people of Lilliput and how do they respond to him?
Gulliver asks for food, water, and clothes from the people of Lilliput, and they respond by providing these things to him. He also asks for assistance in escaping from Lilliput, but they refuse to help him, instead using his size to their advantage.
- Define and explain the scientific situation in Lilliput.
The scientific situation in Lilliput is one of ignorance and superstition. The inhabitants of Lilliput are unable to understand the true nature of Gulliver’s arrival and they have a lack of knowledge and understanding of the world.
- Chapter 3 is full of satire. Explore, exemplify and discuss.
In chapter 3, Swift uses satire to mock the political and societal issues of his time. The chapter satirizes the way in which the people of Lilliput are divided by political factions, and the way in which they use Gulliver for their own purposes.
- Describe and explain the articles imposed on Gulliver by the people of Lilliput. Do you realize anything funny here?
The articles imposed on Gulliver by the people of Lilliput are a set of laws and regulations that govern his behavior and actions while he is in Lilliput. These articles are meant to be humorous and satirical, as they include rules such as “not to turn his eyes towards the palace” and “not to spit in the streets.”
- Even more satire in chapter 4. Explore and discuss.
In chapter 4, Swift uses satire to mock the issues of war and imperialism. The chapter satirizes the way in which the people of Lilliput are willing to go to war over a trivial matter, and the way in which they are willing to use Gulliver as a weapon in their war.
- What are some of the interesting laws and customs of the inhabitants of Lilliput? What do you think these practices and descriptions signify in the novel?
Some of the interesting laws and customs of the inhabitants of Lilliput include their use of high heels, the way in which they divide themselves into political factions, and their use of Gulliver as a tool for their own purposes. These practices and descriptions signify the way in which people use and manipulate others for their own gain, and the way in which they are willing to go to war over trivial matters.
- There is something interesting going on with the sea-language in chapter I. Identify and discuss.
In chapter 1 of Brobdingnag, Gulliver is taken to the court of the King and Queen of Brobdingnag. The sea-language in this chapter is interesting because it serves as a metaphor for the way in which Gulliver is treated by the inhabitants of Brobdingnag. The sea-language is described as “harsh and unpleasing”, which reflects the way in which Gulliver is treated by the inhabitants of Brobdingnag. They are not as kind and gentle as the Lilliputians and their language is not as smooth as the Lilliputians.
- Compare and contrast the reaction of the inhabitants of Lilliput and those of Brobdingnag to Gulliver. Which one do you think is more violent and/or kind?
The inhabitants of Lilliput are initially frightened and awestruck by Gulliver’s size, but they soon begin to see him as a useful tool for their own purposes. In contrast, the inhabitants of Brobdingnag are initially disgusted by Gulliver’s small size and they treat him as an inferior being. The Brobdingnagians are more violent and unkind than the Lilliputians.
- How does Gulliver contrast his situation in Lilliput to that of Borbdingnag? Significance?
Gulliver contrasts his situation in Lilliput to that of Brobdingnag by describing the Lilliputians as “little people” who are “foolish and ignorant” and the Brobdingnagians as “giant people” who are “wise and learned”. This contrast serves to satirize the way in which people view themselves and others in relation to their own size and position in society.
- A lot of scholars have called Gulliver a misanthrope. Do you think is there any proof here for this kind of definition?
Gulliver is not a misanthrope in the novel. He is a traveler who is trying to find his place in the world. His experiences in Lilliput and Brobdingnag force him to question his own values and beliefs, but he does not hate people.
- Why does Gulliver have difficulty persuading the Queen about England?
Gulliver has difficulty persuading the Queen about England because he is unable to provide her with an accurate and unbiased perspective on his homeland. He is unable to separate his own biases and prejudices from the truth and as a result, he paints an unflattering picture of England.
- What do you think the dwarf signifies in the novel?
The dwarf in the novel represents the way in which people view and treat those who are different from them. The dwarf is treated as an inferior being and is used for entertainment, which serves to satirize the way in which society views and treats those who are different.
- How does Gulliver have difficulty adapting to life back in England?
Gulliver has difficulty adapting to life back in England because he has been changed by his experiences in Lilliput and Brobdingnag. He has been exposed to different ways of thinking and living, and he is unable to reconcile these experiences with his own beliefs and values.
- Explain the tone of the narrative throughout the novel.
The tone of the narrative throughout the novel is satirical and critical. Swift uses Gulliver’s travels as a way to criticize the society of his own time and to satirize the human condition. The narrator uses sarcasm and irony to mock the society and the customs of the time.