Swift was a neoclassical writer who wrote to enlighten people. He wanted people to look at the world that exits beyond them selves and discover virtue. Through his work Gulliver’s Travels Jonathan Swift demonstrates to the reader the importance of virtue. I this story the main character am Gulliver; a world traveler who takes a journey to different lands. Each place that Gulliver lands has different ideals that are the foundation of their society. Their views on life are completely new to Gulliver.
There are fatal errors in the way each society functions. The Yahoos are considered to be unintelligent savages. The Houyhnhnms are creatures that use rational thinking in every aspect of life and perceive themselves to be perfect. Swift uses the Houyhnhnms to reveal the foolishness of vanity. Gulliver is a Yahoo who does not fit the set definition the Houyhnhnms have for Yahoos. When the Houyhnhnms are faced with a reality that they have not perceived they refuse to accept it. They simply deny the fact that Gulliver is real and decide that he does not exist. The Houyhnhnms choose ignorance over enlightenment. They have been given the opportunity to learn a new idea, but instead of striving to grasp it they ignore the whole situation. The Houyhnhnms lack of virtue, they are too proud to admit a single imperfection, they cannot fathom that they have made an incorrect assumption. Houyhnhnms have allowed for egotism to rule them. Therefore they tell Gulliver he does not exist. They fail to accept Gulliver as a real being, because they had never thought of him before they saw him. Since they think they
are perfect, they cannot conceive of a reality that they did not perceive. Their vanity has blinded them. The Houyhnhnms have no desire to improve their state of being, because they had believed they are flawless. They are complacent with their ignorance. It is virtuous to aspire to find truth. The Houyhnhnms have no desire to find the truth. ...