Gulliver’s Travels: A Debate

For next Friday (2/24), students will write a blog post in support or disagreement with the following prompt, to be debated in class that day:

Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels suggests that human kind would be happier if it could think and behave the way the Houyhnhnms do.

Take the time to do a close reading of a key passage from Gulliver’s Travels that confirms or denies this claim.  Please categorize your post under “Satirizing the Enlightenment” and don’t forget to create specific and relevant tags.  The post is due by Friday 1pm, but students have the option to revise it until 6pm that day.  And please sign your posts so that your TA, Hannah, and I know who wrote what.  Warning: blank or filler “placeholder” posts submitted after the deadline will not receive a grade!

To help you with this post, here are 5 close reading guidelines you should follow:

1. Note key words or phrases that repeat in that passage.

2. Look for irony, paradox, ambiguity, and tension.

3. Note those words or phrases that seem odd or out-of-place.

4. Note any important symbols, motifs, and themes.

5.  Is there anything missing from the text that should be there?


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