Part 2 of Gulliver’s Travel by Jonathan Swift, Gulliver finds an island where he is 1/20th the size of the native people. This mass contrast in size creates a paradoxical view of how Europeans view natives in the new world. Throughout Gulliver’s Travel, swift’s uses Gulliver adventures to foreign land and his interactions with native people to satirically comment on European colonialism. Colonialism spelled disaster for any group involved beside the well to do white man. The passage where Gulliver first gets put on display, page 92-93, is incredible ironic. This passage in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travel suggests that humankind wouldn’t be happier if it could think and behave the way the Houyhnhnms and other native groups do. Also, this passage also satires captivity narratives and their popularity in Europe through a change in perspective.
Colonization of north America was incredibly profitable for the European’s yet most of the profits came at the expense of the native population. Swift takes this reality and reverse it in this narrative. This major change in perspective shows how inhumane white settlers treated native populations when invading their land. The Europeans flatout mistreated the native population. Instead of treating them as equals the Europeans treated the natives as a spectacle, a form of entertainment that was flat out inferior to europeans. European/puritan captivity narratives were incredible popular. This popularity is parodied by swift in this passage. The reader can see this parodying when swift wrote, “For, those who had seen me made such wonderful reports, that the people were ready to break down the doors to come in” (Swift 93). The master purely see Gulliver as a form of profit, just like how the Europeans viewed native population. He’s so profitable in his first day on display that the master decides to take Gulliver to “the most considerable cities of the kingdom” (Swift 93). Swift writes this narrative because, like the natives, he is a victim of imperialism. So, swifts objective for gulliver’s travels is to give the other perspective to the impacts of colonialism and imperialism.