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Book II The Voyage to Brobdingnag

There are two views of politics - the humanistic view and the mechanical view. Politics is the function of solving human problems. It is usually a reaction to problems.

In a humanistic view, it is the function of politics to solve the problem and do it harmoniously. The politician must be a man who understands how humans work and who is motivated by doing good for man. The King of Brobdingnag is such a politician.

In book II, we see Swift's view of what can be possible for human beings if we work toward it. This society recognizes that man is flawed but can achieve something better. The Brobdingnagians are the paradigms for Swift.

Gulliver is the quintessential modern man. He collects information and analyzes it in great detail. Swift points out that 1. after doing this, what have you said and 2. is there ever an ethical dimension in science. The King of Brobdingnag looks at the ethical dimension. When given the formula for gun powder, the king said he would not let it out. Swift asks what good is all this scientific knowledge.

Some odd thoughts on Book II

Although the Lilliputians were very small, they ate a great variety. They made a public show of it. The Brobdingnagians ate simply and had rational discussions.

Gulliver's box provided him much ventilation. This is because the Brobdingnagians felt that Gulliver was very emotional and needed air.

The Lilliputians had their children for their own pleasure and therefore had them taken away for education. The Brobdingnagians educated their own children. The Brobdingnagians believed in stroking and support.

The dwarf is typical of human nature. Humans will pick on the being that is the next lower on the scale.

The Brobdingnagians are capable of providing a system of checks and balances in their government. Swift did not approve of England's expansionism policies. The emphasis at the time was on making money. Swift believed that this leads to a lack of concern for people.

p. 63 - Gulliver compares himself to a weasel without realizing it.

p. 79 - The Brobdingnagians are incredibly decent people. They are extremely honest. Gulliver is a pet and he is proud of it. The king is honest enough to say that humans, himself included, could be mimicked by such diminutive insects as Gulliver. The imitation of the human grandeur by insects. Gulliver engages in false analogy.

p. 101 - 103 - The king of Brobdingnag shows more intelligence and humanity than Gulliver can ever understand

p.106 - (final paragraph) Even Brobdingnagians are flawed. However, this is the best you can get. The flaw is in human nature.

p. 127 - The beggars - merciless attack on human vanity.