A Companion to Satire: Ancient and Modern by Ruben Quintero

By Ruben Quintero

This selection of twenty-nine unique essays, surveys satire from its emergence in Western literature to the current.

  • Tracks satire from its first appearances within the prophetic books of the outdated testomony during the Renaissance and the English culture in satire to Michael Moore’s satirical motion picture Fahrenheit 9-11 .
  • Highlights the real impact of the Bible within the literary and cultural improvement of Western satire.
  • Focused normally on significant classical and ecu impacts on and works of English satire, but additionally explores the advanced and fertile cultural cross-semination in the culture of literary satire.

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Sample text

Ecclesiastes repeatedly exhibits a good deal of this approach. Its narrator does not, for example, claim that the edicts and wishes of the king are without fault. What is said is that the king is the king, and it is well to be circumspect in his presence and to do what he orders: ‘‘For the king’s word carries authority’’ (Ecclesiastes 8: 4). The king might not be right, but he is powerful. Much of Proverbs pursues the same sort of advice, about the supposedly beneficial life that will be enjoyed by the discreet and the sensible.

Only the priests of Baal and their cronies would have recoiled at the insult. This joke is told at the expense of the non-believer. ’’ A favorite, for example, at the internment of a deceased person, the psalm evokes most pleasant pastoral images, the security of being in the hands of a loving, providing shepherd. The psalm envisions satisfaction and plenty. What could be more innocent, innocent in a root sense: devoid of harm? Yet, as the psalm anticipates the various pleasures of pastoral protection given by the Lord, it revealingly celebrates as one of the divine bounties a table that will be spread before the psalmist in the presence of his enemies.

In addition, biblical narrative and those conduct writings known as wisdom literature provide more instances of the keen sense of ridicule felt in Scripture. Sarah, in Genesis (16: 1–6), becomes jealous of the successfully pregnant Hagar and demands that Abraham send her away. The Philistines, ‘‘when they grew merry,’’ call for the blinded and impotent Samson ‘‘to make sport for us’’ ( Judges 16: 25). ) Despite his suicide, Saul is regarded as one of the heroes of Israel. David rejects the advice of Ahitophel, which is a public humiliation, and the counselor returns immediately to his home and hangs himself (2 Samuel 17: 23).

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