For the last 250 years people everywhere have enjoyed reading about Lemuel Gulliver's travels in the strange countries of Lilliput and Brobdingnag. The people of these countries, with all their curiously human failings, come to life in vivid illustrations. Here is a story to make you laugh - but to make you think, too.--GOODREADS
Lemuel Gulliver always dreamed of traveling the world. But when a violent storm claims his ship and casts him adrift among uncharted lands, he is taken to places that he could not even dream of. Traveling to the nation of Lilliput, where the inhabitants measure just centimeters tall, and to Brobdingnag, where they tower into the sky like giants, Gulliver voyages to an island floating above the clouds, visits a race of immortals, and finds himself stranded in a land ruled by horses.
Face to face with warring armies and power-hungry kings, each new journey makes Gulliver more desperate to find a way back home. But once he discovers the truth about his own land and himself, returning home becomes the last thing he desires. Written by world-renowned satirist, Jonathan Swift, Gulliver s Travels is one of the most gripping and poignant adventures ever told.--FictionDB
Officially titled Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World, in Four Parts. By Lemuel Gulliver, First a Surgeon, and then a Captain of several Ships, Gulliver's Travels is the story of the travels of Lemuel Gulliver, to such exotic places as Lilliput and Brobdingnag.
Lisa (Jun 27, 2014) rated it 5 of 5 Stars - it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, 1001-books-to-read-before-you-die
"And he gave it for his opinion, "that whoever could make two ears of corn, or two blades of grass, to grow upon a spot of ground where only one grew before, would deserve better of mankind, and do more essential service to his country, than the whole race of politicians put together."
I don't think there will ever be a time when Gulliver's Travels doesn't feel like a perfect mirror of humankind. I remember the first time I read it, as a child. I was immeasurably impressed with the sudden insight that things are small or great depending on comparison with other things, and that there are no absolute values. That knowledge, combined with the idea that you learn to understand yourself by seeing your peculiarities through the eyes of people who do not share your social and cultural background, helped me navigate my globetrotting childhood. When I reread the Travels as a grown-up, I focused more on the political satire, finding pleasure in discovering that the typical idiocies of my own time apparently had their correspondences centuries ago. Somehow, that made life easier to bear.
But now I am beginning to wonder. Are the yahoos degenerating further? When will they hit rock bottom? And could we maybe ship off some of our worst yahoos to Lilliput, where they can claim they are great without lying?
Thank Goodness there are authors like Swift, who are capable of making humanists in despair laugh on dark November nights after reading the never-ending misery called news. Oh Lordy, I wish they were fake.
But they are likely to mirror the world - without the wit and irony that Swift added to make life endurable, enjoyable even! That is a quality in an author that is always needed, now more than ever! Yahooooooooooooo!
Matthew (Jan 08, 2013) rated it 5 of 5 Stars - it was amazing:
Shelves: favorites, fantasy, classic, required-reading-high-school
This was my favorite required reading in high school (well, actually, probably tied with Animal Farm). It was a very pleasant and unexpected surprise. The reference points I had were cartoon re-telling of this from my youth. I only really had an image of Gulliver vs the Lilliputians - and that was only the most basic "giant in a land full of very small people" story-lines (well, they were trying to entertain children, so it doesn't have to get much more complex than that).
But, the book is made up of more stories than just Gulliver as a giant (hence the Travels - plural). The content of these stories is witty and not-so-thinly veiled political and social commentary. In the end, it didn't feel like required reading at all - it was a truly enjoyable adventure I was glad to take!