Essay on Report on Gullivers Travels, Part 3

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Report on Gulliver's Travels. Part III:
A Voyage to Laputa, Balnibarbi, Glubbdubdrib. Luggnagg, and Japan
In October of 1726 Jonathan Swift published his most famous work, Gulliver's Travels. Most readers are familiar with three of the four parts of this work: the land of the little people (Lilliput), the land of the giants (Brobdignag), and the land of the ruling horses (Houyhnhnm-land). However, modem readers may not be as familiar with Part III, which has not received as much critical attention. Some of this neglect is deserved, since this part is less focused and all parts of it are not as good as the other three books. Some of it, however, is quite interesting and deserving of critical attention. In this section, the narrator,
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Because Gulliver does not need a flapper, he is considered inferior and is placed in the same class as women and servants. As Ernest Tuveson points out in his Introduction to Swift: A Collection of Critical Essays, Swift especially hates theorists who place "abstract principle above commonplace needs" and saves some of his bitterest satire for them (6). Joseph Horrell, in his essay on Gulliver, points out that whereas hi Book II Swift praises the practical mathematics of the Brobdignagians, he satirizes the impractical Laputians, who attempt to measure Gulliver for clothes by using a quadrant. Of course the resulting clothing does not fit, but such lowly devices as measuring tapes they consider beneath them (60).
Unhappy among these inhabitants because no one except the inferior women and servants can carry on a conversation with him, Gulliver decides to visit the continent below, Balnibarbi. He finds this place as unpractical as Laputa, for some of the inhabitants, after having visited Laputa and learned a little of their impractical knowledge, have tried to improve agriculture and architecture by applying this learning to it. As a result, they dress badly, their houses are poorly built, and their farms produce very little. Only the old-fashioned inhabitants who refuse to try the new ideas live in decent homes and produce anything on their farms.

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