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GULLIVER's Travels as Adventure Story

GULLIVER's Travels as Adventure Story

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Published by AbdulRehman

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Published by: AbdulRehman on Feb 04, 2010
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07/14/2013

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“GULLIVER’S TRAVELS” AS A NOVEL OFADVENTURE AND A TALE OF WONDER:
 A Classic for Young Readers as an Adventure Story:
“Gulliver’s Travels” is no doubt a story of adventure and it has several elements of afairy tale. Both adventure and fairy tale elements in a story appeal greatly to the young mind.They have some charm even for the adult mind. But it would be an incorrect view to regard“Gulliver’s Travels” as merely an adventure story intended for the entertainment of youngpeople. Gulliver’s tale is an allegorical satire. In other words, there lies below the surface adeeper meaning. Swift’s real purpose was to expose the follies, absurdities and evils of mankind in general.
Difficulties Faced by Gulliver in His Voyages:
Let’s take a look at “Gulliver’s Travels” as a tale of adventure which is a fanciful account of strange and wonderful lands. The book tells us the story of Lemuel Gulliver. Every voyage isan adventure in itself like seven voyages of Sindbad. There is, first of all, the voyage to acountry called Lilliput. Gulliver gets ship-wrecked and has to swim to the shore to save hislife. On the sea shore he falls into a sound sleep and when he wakes up, he finds himself aprisoner in chains. In the second voyage Gulliver’s ship is overtaken by a fierce storm whichengulfs the sailors including Gulliver. However, when, after the storm, the ship casts anchor,and a few sailors with Gulliver himself, are sent to the shore, Gulliver finds himself a captivein the hands of a giant. In the course of his third voyage Gulliver’s ship is attacked by pirates.The pirates depriving him of all his belongings put him on a small boat and set him adrift. Fivedays later, the boat reaches a rocky island where Gulliver gets down very tired and desolate.In the course of his fourth voyage, Gulliver is attacked by the members of the crew of his ownship and is bound hand and foot. After a few days, the rascals put Gulliver down on the sea-coast and sail away, leaving him alone. Gulliver finds himself in a new country about which heknows nothing at all.
 A story of Risks and Dangers:The above brief account of the various voyages of Gulliver shows thedifficulties and dangers that Gulliver faced in the course of his wanderings. Adventure always implies a risk of life or a danger to life. The man who has the spirit of adventure in him is always ready to face risks and dangers. Gulliver sets out froma comfortable life at home in order to explore unknown countries, knowing well that he will face many difficulties and hardships. But every time he goes on a fresh voyagewillingly and experiences not only difficulties and hardships but also seriousdangers to his life. It is a miracle that each time he returns home safely.The Amusing Experiences of Gulliver in the Strange Country of Dwarfs:
There are strange experiences of Gulliver in various lands. Every land which Gullivervisits is a wonderful land, and Gulliver’s experiences in every land are strange or exciting. InLilliput the people are dwarfs, hardly six inches in height. The very idea that there are humanbeings so small is funny. But more amusing than that is the manner in which Gulliver is fed.Several ladders are applied by the Lilliputians to his sides, and about a hundred of them climb
 
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up those ladders in order to carry baskets full of meat and drink and put them close to hismouth. Similarly, it has taken nine hundred Lilliputians three hours to raise Gulliver to thelevel of a huge carriage by which he is carried to the royal court. In the metropolis, Gulliverbecomes an object of curiosity, and people come from far and near to look at him. He is giventhe name “man-mountain. One of the most amusing incidents in this part of the book isGulliver’s extinguishing a fire in the Empress’s apartment by urinating on it. The Empress feelsgreatly annoyed with this action of Gulliver and moves from that apartment to a differentlocation. Some of the customs of the Lilliputians are also a source of amusement. Forinstance, they bury their dead with the heads of the corpses directly downwards becausethey hold belief that after eleven thousand moons the dead would rise from their graves andthat during this period the earth would turn upside down so that the dead would on comingback to life, find themselves standing on their feet. Another comic absurdity of the Lilliputiansis their manner of writing which is very peculiar, being slant from one corner of the paper tothe other “like the ladies in England.”
Gulliver’s Exciting Experiences in the Country of Giants:
In part II of the book we find ourselves with Gulliver in another strange and wonderfulland. This land is called Brobdingnag. This land is inhabited by monstrous looking giants whoare twelve times the height of Gulliver. Gulliver thinks himself to be as small as Lilliputianswere by contrast with him. When Gulliver is first shown by his captor to his wife, she screamsand runs away as a woman in England might do at the sight of a toad or spider. The youngestson in the family of Gulliver’s captor lifts Gulliver by the legs and holds him so high in the airthat Gulliver begins to tremble with fear. Gulliver sees a cat which is three times larger thanan ox in England, and feels greatly alarmed by its fierceness. When Gulliver wakes from hissleep, he is attacked by a couple of rats which are of the size of a big dog. When Gulliver isafterwards bought by the queen, he becomes a favourite with her. As a consequence, theroyal dwarf begins to feel jealous of Gulliver and plays much mischief with him. On oneoccasion, the dwarf makes Gulliver fall into a large bowl of cream. On another occasion, hethrusts Gulliver’s whole body into a bone from which the marrow has been taken out. Thereare too many flies in Brobdingnag. The flies here are very large, like all other creatures, andGulliver feels much troubled by them as they hum and buzz about his ears. The reader wouldperhaps not believe him and think that Gulliver is guilty of exaggeration.
Gulliver’s Account of the Life in Laputa, Lagado, etc:
Laputa, the voyage to which is described in part III of the book, is another wonderfulland. Laputa is an island which keeps flying at a height of about two miles from the earth overthe continent of Balnibarbi. This in itself is a miracle. The people of Laputa have strangeshapes and faces. Their heads are all reclined either to the right or to the left, one of theireyes being turned inward and the other directly up to the zenith. Another strange feature of life on Laputa is that mutton, beef, pudding, and other eatables are given geometrical shapes.When these people want to praise the beauty of a woman or any other animal they do so ingeometrical or musical terms. There are several schemes being developed at the school of political projects also. These are all very amusing and impractical schemes. Gulliver’s visit tothe island of Glubbdubdrib is also very interesting because Gulliver here finds himself in aplace where ghosts and spirits are in attendance upon the governor and where Gulliver isenabled to hold conversations with the spirits of such great men of the past as Alexander,

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