A Modest Proposal and Other Essays

  • by Jonathan Swift
  • Narrated by Norman Dietz
  • 1 hrs and 29 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

In "A Modest Proposal," first published in 1729, Jonathan Swift heaps scorn on then-current political theory and reveals the appalling suffering taking place in Ireland - not through direct reporting, but through mock suggestions on what to do with the poor; they should sell their children for food. "The chief end I propose to myself in all my labors is to vex the world rather than divert it," wrote Jonathan Swift in a letter to his friend Alexander Pope. Other vexing works collected here are "Directions to Servants," "The Art of Political Lying," "A Digression Concerning the Critics," and "Sweetness and Light."

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Audible Editor Reviews

Population problems? Eat the babies, of course. That's what Irish writer Jonathan Swift purports in this famous collection of essays. Both humorous and significant, Swift's articles are some of the most memorable English satirical works. Fittingly so, Norman Dietz is a superb audio performer in a league of his own. His tone juxtaposes both the serious and the tongue-in-cheek, thus capturing Swift's intentions. For each essay, Dietz adopts a caricature appropriate to the context. These essays have been startling since the 1700s. When combined with Dietz's performance, they are enthralling, hilarious, and deeply moving.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Very good reading; subpar audio quality

Obviously this is a great story, a masterpiece of satirical humor. I am not reviewing the story. I just wanted to note that I thought the reading performance was very good. The audio quality is not so great, but I found it totally listenable and enjoyed it.
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- Jaded Buddha

waste of money

As been said, this is very difficult to hear; it's the worst audio quality of anything I've ever got from audible.

On top of that, the reader (firmly American) reads without any of the drama and irony that might help to communicate the point of Swift's satire.

Doing these kinds of texts badly is a sadly wasted opportunity.
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- William

Book Details

  • Release Date: 12-16-1999
  • Publisher: Recorded Books