Prime Mates: The Simian, Maternity and Abjection in Brobdingnag
This essay investigates the layered nature of animality, maternity, and abjection epitomised by Gulliver’s frightening adventures in Brobdingnag. I focus specifically on the maternal force-feeding Gulliver is subject to by the Brobdingnagian monkey, which he describes as “the greatest Danger I ever faced in the Kingdom.” The monkey is killed following the episode, which temporarily restores Gulliver’s stalwart sense of self. I contend that the monkey incident in Brobdingnag decentres Gulliver’s sense of identity and demonstrates the violability of his body by the feminised animal, which ultimately destabilises his sense of masculinity and opens myriad queer potentialities.
Journal for Eighteenth-Century Studies
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Chow, Jeremy. "Prime Mates: The Simian, Maternity and Abjection in Brobdingnag." (2020) : 315-326.