Gulliver's Travels | Jonathan Swift | Lit2Go ETC
Gulliver's Travels Jonathan Swift
Gulliver’s Travels (1726, amended 1735), officially Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, is a novel by Jonathan Swift that is both a satire on human nature and a parody of the “travellers’ tales” literary sub-genre. It is widely considered Swift’s magnum opus (masterpiece) and is his most celebrated work, as well as one of the indisputable classics of English literature.
Book Review: Gulliver's Travels-Jonathan Swift
If the Travels were initially generated by the Scriblerians interest in mocking pedantry and contemporary science, it was Swift alone who fleshed out the narrative of a Scriblerus character sent off on a series of imaginary journeys. From Swift's correspondence, we know that the main composition of Gulliver began around the end of 1720, and was finished in the autumn of 1725.
Jonathan Swift's classic takes a naughty turn
So here already we have a rather strange set of relationships established between Swift and the authorship of Gulliver's Travels. First the book starts out as the product of several minds, a group project. Then it becomes Swift's own, but one from which he distances himself by pretending that its really by its fictional narrator, Gulliver, and brought to the publisher by Gulliver's fictional cousin, Sympson. Then the book is published, and rather than getting Swift’s own version of Gulliver's Travels, the London literati get a version bowdlerised by the publisher. Nonetheless, it is a hit, and Swift revels in the success of 'his' book; yet he continues to pretend that it's not 'really' by him. By 1726, the notion of authorship of Gulliver's Travels is a tricky business.