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Monday, 6 December 2010

Jonathon Swift and Adam Smith

A Modest Proposal

In 1729, when Ireland was in very big financial trouble, satirist, Jonathon Swift decided to publish 'A Modest Proposal'. This was a satirical piece of writing which suggested eating your children, or selling them to the rich as a food.

He pointed out that up to 1 year of age, a child can survive on nothing but the mothers milk, and therefore not needing to cost the family any money during that time. He suggests they turn 1 year old, they are then killed and used for feeding and cloathing. The Cloathing items that Swift suggests includes boots for geneltemen and bags for ladies.

  • He stated that this process prevented(ironically) voluntary abortions and prevents murder of bastard children.
  • It also halts the over-pupulated problem that Ireland has.
  • Swift argues that it would be more humane to kill the child while they still have minimal awareness and thoughts than to let them suffer a slow death of starvation because of thier poor family being unable to supply food.

This idea is very humourous, and i can just imagine people at the time reading this piece and believing it to be true. The word 'modest' in the title is satircal itself as it couldn't be further from the truth.

The Wealth of Nations

Adam Smith was a philosopher and very enthusiastic about political economics. He wrote The Wealth of Nations which explained why certain countries are richer than others.

In this publication Smith used the term 'the invisible hand'


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