Jonathan Swift's 'Gulliver's Travels' and Voltaire's 'Candide': An Analysis

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The author Joseph Conrad once remarked, "Being a woman is a terribly difficult task, since it consists principally in dealing with men." In analyzing Jonathan Swift's Gulliver's Travels and Voltaire's Candide, it is intriguing and revealing how these male authors deal with women. Through understanding how these seminal works portray women one can gain the literary criticism tools to examine similar social issues in other texts. In Candide, there are repeated accounts of the sexual exploitation of women. Voltaire seems to use the stories of these women to make a point that there are special dangers to which only women are subdue too. The male characters in Candide, seem to be that of very hypocritical context. They value sexual purity in the women but make it remotely impossible for women to keep it, exposing rather hypocritical aspects of morals. Not only in the book were women used as slaves, but so were the men. They were bought and sold as many times as one could possibly imagine. When Candide was entering England he saw an admiral being executed for the "crime" of fighting with insufficient audacity against the French. Candide, himself, is even enlisted into and abused by the army of the Bulgar King. Voltaire was a human rights activist, so the message he seems to be communicating is that the means that people are being treated are horrific, there complete injustices that should not be used under any circumstance. In Gulliver's Travels, the remarks regarding women

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