Jonathan Swift

Jonathan Swift

by Brean Hammond (Editor)

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Overview

Jonathan Swift by Brean Hammond

This innovative series meets the urgent need for comprehensive new accounts of Irish writing across the centuries which combine readability with critical authority and information with insight. Each volume addresses the whole range of a writer's work in the various genres, setting its vision of the world in biographical context and situating it within the intellectual, cultural and political currents of the age, in Ireland and the wider world. This series will prove indispensable for students and specialists alike.

This book offers an accessible single-volume introduction to a wider range of Swift's writing than is usually covered in such treatments of him. Primarily a work of biographically-inflected literary criticism, it draws on insights furnished by feminist and postcolonial literary theories when those are relevant. Its portrait of this charismatic writer confronts the complexities in character, style and rhetorical posture that make him enduring and important. Swift is situated as a career-clergyman rather than an imaginative writer, whose ecclesiastical politics, geographical and national situation in Ireland and obliquities of temperament made him the challenging writer he was. Commencing with an account of the domestic and foreign contexts in which Swift's life was rooted, the book provides a chronological account of that life, putting appropriate emphasis on its controversial and contested nature. His writing is examined chronologically, progressing through his early writing, early religious satire, English political and personal writings and the Irish phase of his life and writing. Intersecting those sequential chapters are thematic and textual chapters. The thematic chapters engage with the nature of Swift's religion and of his relationships with women. Textual chapters are devoted to Swift's too often neglected poetic achievement; and to Gulliver's Travels. Additionally, in the chapter on Swift's Irish religious and political writings, the missing religious dimension of Gulliver's Travels - a work that draws on Utopian writing and might have said something about Utopian religion - is considered as part of an analysis of Swift's religious vocation.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780716529507
Publisher: Irish Academic Press
Publication date: 11/27/2009
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements vii

List of Abbreviations ix

Notes on Dates xi

Chronology xiii

1 Historical and Cultural Contexts 1

2 Swift's Life 11

3 Early Swift 31

4 Swift the Clergyman 52

5 Swift's Religious Satire 63

6 Private and Public Swift 80

7 Swift and Women 100

8 Swift and Ireland 118

9 Swift the Poet 139

10 Gulliver's Travels: Contexts and Genre 155

11 Gulliver's Travels: The Text 173

Select Bibliography 194

Index 205

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