Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Gulliver's Travels

We used to have Gulliver's Travels as non-detailed section in VI standard English curriculum.At that time I read it with out much analysis,imagining myself embarked upon an odyssey.Now,I got hold of Gulliver's travels a little more detailed version from a book exhibition.The motivation was an RC which I encountered during my CAT preparation.I dont know the source ,but it analysed Gulliver's Travels beautifully.

Gulliver’s Travels is about an Englishman Lemuel Gulliver, trained as a surgeon who sets out to the series of voyages when his business fails. Gulliver narrates the amazing worlds he visits.

Lilliput --> Soon afer marriage Gulliver makes a voyage to south seas.A violent storm strikes the ship.Gulliver swims to a shore and sleeps soundly.When he wakes up he finds himself bound by several slender ropes.Gulliver is shocked to find tiny creatures moving around his body.Gulliver is fed and taken to their capital city,Mildendo.Gulliver is called as man-mountain.Educated men teaches him their language.He is granted freedom on certain conditions.He prevents an invasion from an enemy kingdom Blefuscu.The enemity arose oon a silly matter of how to crack the eggs?Some of the courtiers plans a conspiracy to kill him.He escapes to Blefuscu where he fixes a boat he finds and sails back to his home.

In this episode gulliver is like a superman.The reader naturally feels proud of himself , the normal human being.

Brobdingnag --> After returning home Gulliver spends two months with his family.But his desire to travel didnt allow him to stay any longer.A great storm hits the ship and lands Gulliver in the land of gaints.A farmer discovers.He treats him like a doll,earns money by exhibiting him in various towns.Only the farmers daughter Glumdalclitch is kind to him.Eventually he sells Gulliver to the queen.Glumdalclitch is appointer as his care-taker.He faces several adventures which sound ridiculous to read.Many times ordinary flaws of Brobdingnagians costed dearly to Gulliver.Once he is carried by monkey,he had to fight with wasps,mosquitoes which are far far stronger than him.Brobdingnagians, even the king knows nothing about politics.He felt happy for being atleast more knowledgeable than them.He accompanied the king and the queen to distant frontiers.Here his appartment( a box provided for Gulliver) is taken by an eagle and dropped into the sea.Luckily he finds a ship sailing to England and returns home.

This episode describes man as the weakest creature on the earth.Here Gulliver had to fight for his life for silly reasons.

Laputa --> Gulliver sets sail again.This time he is attacked by pirates and ends up in Laputa.It's a floating land and land below is known as Balnibarbi.None of them appeared curious about anything except for mathematics and music.They naver enjoyed a minutes peace and always talked about sun's health.He visits Glubbdubdrib, island of sorcerers or magicians where he meets the spirits of Alexander the Great,Julius Caesar and Brutus.Then he sails to Luggnagg where he is struck with incredible delight to see Struldbrugs or immortals.But he is shocked to know that Struldbrugs are the most cursed.Besided the usual problems with extreme age they have an additional foulness that cannot be described.His desire for never-ending life was greatly lessened.Finally he bids farewell to the king and returns England through Japan.

In this episode Gulliver finds that there are creatures who dare to explore the realms of understanding that a human being never did.He personifies a perfect man who is a bundle of desires.Seeing Struldbrugs ,with out thinking of consequences he wanted to be one.Later he was awed.

Houyhnhnms --> Some how Gulliver was not well blend in his community.So he again sets out as the captain ofa ship.His men plot against him and set him on shore in an unknown land.This land is ruled by Houyhnhnms, rational-thinking horses.They are served by Yahoos, brutish humanlike creatures.Initially Gulliver was thought to be a Yahoo! But his rational thinking got him special status.Gulliver also admired Houyhnhnms a lot.But some of the Houyhnhnms worried that this man can educate Yahoos! to revolt.So he was forced to leave them.He finds a Portuguese ship and returns England.But he finds all the human beings as Yahoos! because of their narrow mindedness, and many more short comings.He develops a special respect for horses because of Houyhnhnms.

Paradoxically , Gulliver concludes his narrative claiming that the lands he has visited belong to England, as her colonies, even though he questions the whole idea of colonialism.

This final episode depicts man more of a Yahoo! than a Houyhnhnm.The conclusion portrays man's thirst for power.

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