ENG 105 – 22
15 October 2013
The Right to Cannibalism
In his essay, “A Modest Proposal,” Jonathan Swift reacts to the social problem faced by the Irish in 1720’s. Swift proposes that the babies of all the poor and desolate will contribute to the feeding, and partly to the clothing, of many thousands to improve Ireland’s economy and standard of living. He says this because many women kept having children but were unable to provide for them. For example, Swift says, it will prevent these horrid practices of woman murdering their bastard children alas. He also states that his proposal would make the babies “beneficial to the public. For these reasons, he blames ...view middle of the document...
Poverty in Ireland will have mothers raising children who become thieves by the age of six because of no food. Swift says “That a boy or a girl before twelve years old, is no saleable commodity…they will not yield above three pounds.” Mothers who already have several children do not receive any financial support from the children or government. After selling the children the mothers can purchase rags and nutriments that went up four times the value. Children will no longer be probationers because of less stealing. Abortions will increase a financial burden on Ireland. By the government paying cost for surgery of aborting the child it will decrease the welfare going into families’ households. Abortion can also rupture the mother’s uterus causing bleeding and infections which lead to infertility. When the mother takes the chance of losing fertility her consequence results in the husband leaving or the woman’s marital status remaining single.
Parents who live in poverty can sell their children to reduce financial burden. The financial cost of preserving a human life is very high. Money cannot be available to the mothers when their and cattle has already been seized. Swift says, there only remain a hundred and twenty thousand children of poor parents annually born. As a mother being a part of the statistics selling her child will be the best option. It cuts down the population and increase the nations stock by fifty thousand pounds per annum. The mother’s child can be sold for a profit of eight shillings as a delicacy to the rich. With the cost of nursing a beggar’s child being two shillings until it is one year of age they will become a delicious, nourishing, and wholesome food. Swift declares “the poorer tenants will have something valuable of their own…....