Satire In A Modest Proposal

Words: 549
Pages: 3

Satire is like an onion. There are many layers that are peeled to show deeper meanings. As you get closer to the center and core, you cry because of the sad and complex message it holds. Many literary devices, including humor, sarcasm, and verbal irony, contribute to the overall effectiveness of satire by holding a deeper and sincere meaning. These writing devices are heavily used throughout A Modest Proposal, and even begins the writing with verbal irony in the title, “A MODEST PROPOSAL For preventing the children of poor people in Ireland, from being a burden on their parents or country, and for making them beneficial to the public” (page 1, Swift). This title seeps with verbal irony because the proposal is anything but modest, the term …show more content…
Swift sarcastically claims that it is the fault of poor children and families that do not benefit the country that are the source of the low quality life in Ireland. This exposes the British for ignoring and being unconcerned with the state that many Irish people are in and the fact that nothing is being done to fix the broken country. Metaphors and exaggeration are used in A Modest Proposal to hold a deeper meaning and is seen when Swift says, “A child will make two dishes at an entertainment for friends, and when the family dines alone, the fore or hind quarter will make a reasonable dish, and seasoned with a little pepper or salt, will be very good boiled on the fourth day, especially in winter” (lines 70-74, Swift). The use of exaggeration and metaphors in this selection targets the wealthy and Britain. Salt and pepper is a metaphor for goods produced in Ireland that get sent to