Customer Reviews for

Gulliver's Travels (Barnes & Noble Classics Series)

Average Rating 3.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

16 out of 21 people found this review helpful.

Beyond Lilliput

Forget the cartoon versions of the Lilliputians and read the original. This collection of adventures from four voyages (Lilliput is only the first voyage.) builds in satire and its cutting edge right through the fourth voyage. Although written in such a different time, ...
Forget the cartoon versions of the Lilliputians and read the original. This collection of adventures from four voyages (Lilliput is only the first voyage.) builds in satire and its cutting edge right through the fourth voyage. Although written in such a different time, the book remains biting in wit and thought provoking. A most read for those interested in custom and culture, power and authority, and politics and economics in a shrinking world.

posted by AnnieBM on January 8, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Classic Satire on Human Folly and Intrigue

Thought-provoking and still relevant to the political follies of modern times, if you look past the veneer of the entertaining story. It has probably been 40 years since I read this in high school, and wanted to re-read it following a visit to Ireland. The story is base...
Thought-provoking and still relevant to the political follies of modern times, if you look past the veneer of the entertaining story. It has probably been 40 years since I read this in high school, and wanted to re-read it following a visit to Ireland. The story is based on 4 fantasy voyages to different isolated areas of the globe, outside the known geography of the time it was written, 1726 - it would be set in modern times as different planets, like Star Trek episodes. The allegories and satire appear to elude many of those who are writing 2 line reviews of this story, like -- boring, too many pages, archaic. Those reviewers must be products of the dumbed-down education rubric of today, looking at the story at face value simply for entertainment without trying to understand the author's intent or interest in the story behind the story. Most people are acquainted with the Lilliputians, the tiny people, but are unfamiliar with the rest of the book. Having recently read a novel based on the writings of Roger Williams in the 1600's, this book was highly influenced by the political events of the English Civil War and that of the Protestant/Anglican in-fighting represented by the Big-Endians and Little-Endians, fighting battles over which end to crack open an egg . Some things seem astonishingly prescient that conditions have changed very little in nearly 400 years, such as the Royal Academy scientists of Laputa spending years of research to extract sunshine from cucumbers, or mixing paint by smell, compared to the grant-writing researchers of today, like shrimp on a treadmill. The fourth voyage to the land of the Houyhnhnms described a utopian society, where the dignity and intelligence of the horse-like creatures ruled, without lying or guile, and the inferior human-like Yahoos describes the unfortunate lot of those living in modern society, infested with imperfections, disease, crime, greed, and envy. Remarkable insights can be taken, particularly in this edition, with linked footnotes, an interactive glossary for the archaic terms (there were a few that got missed), and the extras about the various films that have been made over the years. An excellent commentary to be shared and discussed.

posted by 12Miler on January 28, 2012

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