Bullying Is Bullying

One thing is safe to say, people can be cruel. Regardless of the form of attack an attack is an attack. Which is what we can see Alexander Pope’s work The Dunciad do, as Pope criticizes writers to which he believes and considers to be dull, stupid, and corrupt to name a few. And while Pope decides to attack writers by using words we can see people fight back through images. As we can see in Image #2, fellow attackers have decided to ridicule and attack Pope by giving him what seems to be a mix of a rat and an ape like body hunched over some books. Now while neither party has anything nice to say about the other that doesn’t stop them from their right of free speech. However these actions of publically attacking one another made me think of the following line from Pope’s work,

My sons! (she answer’d) both have done your parts:
Live happy both, and long promote our arts.
But hear a Mother, when she recommends
To your fraternal care, our sleeping friends. [440]

Pope is praising the idea that people should live in the arts and share it but do it in a mindful manner where one is caring, considering that perhaps those you are addressing will not be aware of the work and those who publish the work are not aware how the person the work is addressed to will feel/react. To me, this is ironic considering his very work is attacking his, “sleeping friends” instead of caring for them. And although we see his “friends” attacking and ridiculing Pope through an image where not only they display him as a strange animal but they also poke fun at his health, in this case the hunchback he has due to illness at a young age we also see them attacking his literary ability by displaying his works and a look of confusion on his face almost like as if he himself were not to understand what he is writing or just literature in general. Regardless of how they are attacking each other both parties are attacking each others literate capabilities as well as moral ones. Going down to the lowest attack being personal looks and health, Pope and his “bullies” seem to not care about any boundaries as long as they get their point across on how and why one is worse than the other. Regardless of how you look at it, to me both are equally as guilty for bullying, although one perhaps plays the victim card better than the other.

-Diana Moreno

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