Tag Archives: Jonathan Swift

What is Good Writing?

typewriter

BECAUSE I KNOW that some of my readers are also writers, I post an occasional essay on writing. If the topic of writing bores you, here’s my essay on Anna Hazare and Gandhi for your consideration. Or perhaps you might enjoy this essay about Disney. For the rest of you, here are my thoughts on good writing.

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The Sundae And The Mere Production Of Happiness

In his best-known satire of 1726, Jonathan Swift confects a historical account of the “civil commotions” which have claimed eleven thousand Lilliputian and Blefescusian lives and at the centre of which stands the deadly matter of the end, big or little, at which an egg is to be broken. The passage, which casts a withering gaze over English religious history from the time of Henry VIII forward, merits a generous citation:

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