Swift’s representation of some of the customs in Lilliput had a direct touch of a utop an society. Explain that idea from your own point of view.
Ans. In the first part of Gulliver’s Travels besides several satirical attacks on the abuses of contemporary English politics, Swift had directly portrayed a utopian society in order to have a comparative view of the then civil society in England. In the country of the Lilliputians, if an accused person was proved to be innocent he must get compensation for the hardship and suffering he had undergone. In that case, the accuser must put into an ignominious death immediately and with his land and property, the accused person is recompensed. Fraud and ingratitude were treated as greater crimes in that land.
Reward and punishment were two significant things in the government. Whoever showed sufficient proof that he had strictly followed the laws of his country for seventy-three moons he must be rewarded with a good amount of money and certain privileges. The education system of the Lilliputians was utterly different from other countries. The responsibility of the children’s education was fully on the government. Parents were treated as the last of all others to be trusted with the education of their own children. The country had public nurseries where every parent except cottagers and laborers were obliged to send their children. Infants of both sexes were reared and educated in those nurseries till the age of twenty moons.
At that time they were supposed to have some rudiments of docility. These schools were of several kinds suitable for different qualities and for both the sexes. They had certain professors well – skilled in preparing children for such a condition of life befitting to the rank of their parents. The nurseries for the male child of noble birth were provided with grave and learned professors and their several deputies. The clothes and food of the children were plain and simple. They were brought up by the principles of honor, justice, courage, modesty, religion, and love for their country. They were always employed in some business except in the time of eating and sleeping. They got two hours for diversions consisting of bodily exercise. Their parents were allowed to see them only twice a year in the presence of a professor They were allowed only to kiss the child at meeting and parting. They could not bring any presents like toys or sweetmeats. In the female nurseries, the young girls of quality were educated much like the males. Only they were dressed by the servants of their own sex but always in the presence of a professor.
If it was found that the nurses ever entertained the young girls with frightful or foolish stories; they were publicly whipped and imprisoned or banished to a desolate place. In education, there was no difference between sexes except physical exercise. The nurseries for children of ordinary gentlemen, merchants, traders, and handicrafts were conducted in the same manner. In fact, Swift’s presentation of the customs in Lilliput clearly signified a utopian society that was free from all sorts of self-interest, personal greed, royal intrigue, or political influence.
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