Shipwrecked and cast adrift, Lemuel Gulliver wakes to find himself on Lilliput, an island inhabited by little people, whose height makes their quarrels over fashion and fame seem ridiculous. His subsequent encounters - with the crude giants of Brobdingnag, the philosophical Houyhnhnms and brutish Yahoos - give Gulliver new, bitter insights into human behaviour. Swift's savage satire views mankind in a distorted hall of mirrors as a diminished, magnified and finally bestial species, presenting us with an uncompromising reflection of ourselves.
Lemuel Gulliver, ship's surgeon and castaway, has awaken in Lilliput, where the size of the tiny inhabitants makes their concerns and quarrels seem ridiculous. A second journey takes him to the kingdom of giants, where again his size gives him new adrift by pirates, Gulliver's final voyage brings him to the land of the Houyhnhms, horses with reason, who share their domain with the brutish Yahoos. He returns to England a changed man.
Swift's corrosive satire embraces all aspects of humanity. It is witty when dealing with foibles and frailty, bitterly when facing pride and stupidity, but compassionate and unsentimental when focused upon suffering.