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Publisher's Summary

Jonathan Swift's world-famous books - from Gulliver's Travels to A Modest Proposal - are unparalleled in their piercing critique of modern society. Half-orphaned, a Dubliner by birth, but a man who would always insist he was English, Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) was a figure of great contradictions. An essayist, political pamphleteer, poet, and cleric who became dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin, Swift satirized the powerful but aspired to political greatness, mocked men's vanity but held himself in high esteem, and was a religious moralizer famed for his malice - a man sharply aware of humanity's flaws, but no less susceptible to them. At once a revealing biography of a life that encompasses writing on religion, class, sex, power, and poverty and a portrait of the foremost political writer of his day, Jonathan Swift draws a vivid and nuanced account of an extraordinary man and a turbulent period of history.

©2016 John Stubbs (P)2017 Tantor

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Slow to warm to Swift

I ended up feeling like Swift was a beloved, crotchety great uncle whose foibles I came to understand over time, but it took quite a lo g time to really warm to him. the same is true for his writing, so I suppose that this feeling of caring about him in spite of his personality is not so strange. what genius he had, but all at cross purposes to his own desire to get on in life. Had a therapist been available in 17th century, likely we wouldn't have encountered Gulliver, the Drapier or Cadmus.