Philmus further points out that Gulliver, so long as he is committed to the Houyhnhnms
' "community grounded upon reason and truth-telling," unwittingly "embodies a serious threat to the Houyhnhnm
universe" since "He does not easily fit into the classifications that the neat dichotomies of that universe afford" (66, 67).
Samuel Johnson's remarks on the Houyhnhnm
episode are characteristic of the general critical reception of the book (grounded, as they often were in the eighteenth century, within the framework of morality, either humanist or religious): "the part [...] which gave the most disgust must be the history of the Houyhnhnms
" (Johnson's Life of Swift 1).
And, is there less Probability in my Account of the Houyhnhnms
or Yahoos, when it is manifest as to the latter, there are so many Thousands in this City, who only differ from their Brother Brutes in Houyhnhnmland, because they use a sort of Jabber, and do not go naked.
In the land of the Houyhnhnms
, Gulliver finds an ideal society organised entirely along rational lines.
In Lemuel's aspiration to exalted Houyhnhnm
nature and his longing for transhuman transmutation we can detect something of the biotechnological dystopias of the twenty-first century, when it is now possible for man to rearrange the molecular basis of his own genetic structure.
Worse befalls him in the country of the Houyhnhnms
, the rational horses, where he's distressed to see in the repulsive, ape-like Yahoos "a perfect human Figure" (186).
Si Gulliver aspiraba al aseo y la continencia de los Houyhnhnms
, asqueado ante su condicion excremental qua hombre y europeo, la narradora de Cruelle Zelande se transforma gozosamente en un caballo que por el contrario se derrama en deyecciones sin freno alguno.
This is easily demonstrated by the Houyhnhnm
reaction to the history of European Wars and the eternal Variance of rich, proud nations and poor, hungry nations (212-14).
Yet only in a self-contradictory community of one can Gulliver convince himself that the Houyhnhnm
maxim that 'Reason alone is sufficient to govern a rational Creature' applies to the human being.
Gulliver's last journey is to the land of the Houyhnhnms
, horselike creatures in appearance, possessed of great intelligence, rationality, restraint, and courtesy.
Apparently Swift created HOUYHNHNM
in imitation of the sound of a horse's neigh.