18th Century Research Paper

2042 Words 9 Pages
The eighteenth century presented itself as a very interesting time in history, especially in the literary world. Changes were occurring in British society, as well as Europe as a whole, which sparked a change in literature. Literature became more satirical and authors felt that they had more of an obligation to "out" crooked politicians, a monarch that did not do much, or to even go as far as to criticize other authors and their incapability of proving themselves worthy of joining the literary elite. Authors such as Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift, and Oliver Goldsmith, all left a tremendous imprint on eighteenth century literature, and for centuries to come. Even though they were considered as satirical writers, Pope and Swift hold more similarities …show more content…
All three poets wrote satires about the literary world, modern culture in their time, the authors and the readers. Swift, Goldsmith and Pope all used sarcasm in their writing and also believed that they knew more than everyone else, and that they have a better grasp of the world than everyone else. For instance, Alexander Pope wants everyone to think of him as an independent thinker, a man of moral integrity, and a person who does not really care or is bothered by what people think of him since he knows that he is so smart and was born a genius (P.148). He is therefore, showing off to some extent and making himself seem like he is at the top. He also refers to himself as Alexander the Great (P.148). Swift on the other hand showed that he was the best by using his sarcasm and making himself look smart. With Swifts sarcasm, the reader feels as if Swift knows everything. Also, if a reader is a little slow witted, they might not be able to grasp Swifts sarcasm, and would simply see that whatever he was saying was the absolute truth. This is similar to Goldsmith, however, Goldsmith did not care about the quantity of readers he had, but rather was interested in the quality of the readers and whether they understood what he wanted to say. He mocked writers who looked for more readers just to gain fame or any degree of reputation

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