Posted at 11.29.2018
She delighted him with love, but didn't tempt him with lust; she thrilled him with discourse and lovely contemporary society, yet provoked him to no libidinous desire.
_Thomas Heywood, Gynaikeion
The sort of connection Jonathan Swift possessed with specific representation of women in his writings, have aroused so many reactions from his own the perfect time to ours. Though there are some historical and biographical facts of his life that reveal he has never hitched but also there is no research that he ever endured kind of erotic affairs. In fact in his writings sexual joy is not alluded to and even implicit sources to sex and sexuality show his negative outlook towards them. As obvious instances: the beneficial intimacy of prostitution, with its disgusting diseases; the enthusiasm of wellborn and prosperous women for socially and even physically second-rate men or old men for young women; the lust of the female yahoos for Gulliver. Warren Montag observes that in Gulliver's travels "there is no hint of sexual intrigue or sense at all except aversion" (Montag, 155).
Since we expect a satirist to be often didactic in goal and manner, so is Swift as a satirist of his time. Even though he is going to discuss of a marital habit and event he looks at its sexual part with aversion towards its ceremonial and religious aspect. The embrace that even a sort of typical eroticism can cause in Swift's view is clear in what of the loudspeaker of the poem the lady's dressing room:
Should I the queen of love refuse,
Because she rose from stinking ooze? (Collected Poem, 452)
If we interpret the queen of love here as an allusion to the goddess Aphrodite, the image that is created for us as a goddess out of the blue shattered and faded by the very expression of "stinking ooze" which precedes the later manifestation of the term shit in the poem; "oh! Celia, Celia, Celia shits!" (Collected Poems, 451), or when the presenter agrees that girls are "gaudy tulips increased from dung" (Collected Poems, 452), he implicitly and explicitly affiliates women with various senses of dirt and filth. Though these kind of male details of view provided here aren't romantic at all in the very courtly and admiring sense but is however, familiar for the audience of that time period and even any reader of Swift.
All through Swift's works there are numerous examples of this type of negative representation of women that can be simply regarded as the reflection of his own time, the context in which he has become a literary physique, a male literary body, as almost all, it has been a typical methodology toward women. The number of upper course sons who are "tolerably informed, with an adequate share of good sense"_ only thousand, of equivalent women, he believed there were only 500, signifying the actual fact that half the men of sense must "couple themselves with women for whom they can possibly haven't any esteem; After all fools, prudes, coquettes, gamesters, saunterers, endless talkers of nonsense, splenetic idlers, intriguers, given to scandal and censure" (Prose Works, 4:228)
Right as he harshly scrutinized women as a intimate entity and since a gender, Swift also shown some appreciations of positive kind of camaraderie with individual women. You can find evidences which show his gratifying romantic relationship with Esther Johnson that lasted from junior to middle age and finally finished with the fatality of the girl. However, what is clear in Swift's writings, in any respect, is the appreciation of the desirability of educated and intellectual women rather than mere things of desire.
I cannot call to mind that I ever before once been told her make an incorrect judgment of people, catalogs, or affairs. Her advice was always the best, and with the best liberty, mixt with the best decency. She experienced a gracefulness somewhat more than individual in every movement, term, and action. Never was there so happy a conjunction of civility, freedom, easiness and sincerity.
_On the Death of Mrs. Johnson
This passing exemplifies exactly Swift writing as himself, as Swift the article writer rather than attributing any word to a created literary persona or persona; a good appreciation of the woman's intellectual figure, which comes from his memorializing lines of Esther Johnson, Stella, that was written immediately after her loss of life. It clearly demonstrates that part of Swift's identity that praised women in whom he found valuable attributes and characteristics, intellectual and moral and real human, that he presumed made them in addition to the ordinary society of women. The effect of Stella on Swift is undeniable for any reader of his works. Aside from the literary beloved facet of Stella's identity, through the majority of his blossoming life and job Swift was so depended on her behalf, Stella a person whom he calling the greatest friend, a part of his social circle in Dublin, the nursing company while he was ill, the transcriber and supporter of his literary jobs, the intimate friend of his desires and sadness and problems.
It is said of the Horses in the Perspective, that their Ability was at their Mouths and in their Tails. What is said of Horses in Perspective, may be said of Women in reality.
_Thoughts on Various Subjects
On the other hand, this other passing which originates from Swift's unpublished set of works and pointed out in Louise Barnett's booklet as an epigraph, shows that other sharply different area of Swift which owns his negative and adverting thoughts toward women while viewing them as a gender not intellectual individuals. Here women are shown in the same way a abrasive disgusting physical stereotype, entities known and seen as a the very two physical parts attributed to women in seventeen century, mouth and genitals!
In the patriarchal cultural context of Swift's time, these two type activities, speaking and wringing the male expert and success, were related to women and naturalized by all, that a literary figure like Swift, writing in age enlightenment and intellectuality could not withstand and change or at least cover. He condemns the speaking mother nature of women, dialog of women, but at the same time he praises Stella's conversation as the perfect form of female discussion glorified by intellect and reasonable judgment. Stella's talk for him is the ideal illustration of civilized type of speech: which is satisfactory, sensible and truthful, right as opposed to the stereotype of ordinary women's non appropriate chatting.
Though Swift publicized so many works anonymously to avoid prosecution, but however there is no evidence to think of the loudspeaker as someone apart from Swift himself. Actually, this publishing anonymously offered him the liberty he had a need to exhibit his own behaviour openly.
To be undone, by the Vanity, the Folly, the Satisfaction, and Wantonness of their wives, who under their present Corruption seem to be a kind of canine suffered for our sins to be dispatched in to the world for the damage of Young families, Societies, and Kingdoms. (Prose Works, 12:80)
This condemnation of female gender has come in Swift's anonymously shared work Answer to Several Words from Unknown Folks. Swift is not an exception in his own time regarding the way female gender was appeared. For him the power of tail, icon of sexuality, can be regarded as a form of illegitimate female power. It's the electricity women use to kill the male reason and order. And this passing is the representation of it.
To catch the attention of his people's attention, with the special purpose of challenging their patterns and the way of life, in fact to satirize them and show them their follies, to make sure they are move and defeat the inferiorities of their humanity, any critic, any satirist, may depict the most bitter and well-defined critiques, and so does indeed Swift. Exaggeration is inevitably an important part of his satire. His depiction of female identity except for his favorite lovable girl friends is vividly hyperbolic, however in no chance comic, at the other hands it is so bitter.
As a author of enlightenment get older always there's a desire to have order, restraint, and decorum in Swift's writing; proper behavior in both specific and public level can be an occasion of basic rule in humanity. Ladies in Swift's point of view, were sort of jeopardy while lowering cross the boundaries of order and restraint. They shatter the permanent circle of their own presence and electric power and make an effort to arrogate male privilege. They shatter the foundations of harmony and order in a contemporary society to which man is the power. Thus what Swift as a satirist who tends to correct, things to strongly, is departure from the order of man's world which is ruled by reason and traditional principles. Whatever the reason for his depth toward that negative way of women would be, the impact of the seventeen century patriarchal ideology is undeniable. With the other hand, aside from the proven fact that women will be the most dangerous violators of the neoclassical ideal order, a great part of his negative attitude toward women and his negative undermining representation of these in his books is because of his spiritual and sociable doctrine of his time. It seems so unfair to name him simply as only misogynist cause his knowledge and ability to set-up such great admiring verses and lines to his favorite kind of women is not something accidentally or out of disordered mere enthusiasm and obsession. Thus always there must be a just reading of Swift's literature to tell apart between these outlooks.