Gulliver’s Travels vs Candide: Compare & Contrast
Utopia refers to a perfect place; a land where nothing can go wrong and everything is in the favour of the individuals that live there. Two such places that have been explored are Gulliver’s Houyhnhnm Land and Candide’s El Dorado. In both places, everything runs smoothly on a day to day basis – people are not involved in crimes, there is no need for the law, and every individual thinks on a linear basis, people are able to understand the thoughts of one another. This rules out the need for any punishment because no one infringes upon another’s rights. Every person understands and provides space to the other and does not have a frame of mind where he might indulge himself in ruthless and impulsive activities arising out of negative emotions, because as mentioned, people would not feel such emotions in the first place because they would think alike and not give rise to such unharmonious events.
On the one hand, the main difference between the two Utopian lands explored is that in Houyhnhnm, there is segregation of people upon the basis of gender, color and species whereas in El Dorado, every individual is the same as the other, thus, it does not give rise to any difference in gender, species or color of the creatures living there. Even though there persists equality in both the lands, the aspect of equality is obviously higher in El Dorado because of the reason that every individual looks just like the other and has all the same means and access to anything that he wishes for, just like the other does. Thus, no one has more or less than another. In Huoyhnhm, despite belonging to different groups and sectors, people have everything that they need as well, this goes to show that despite having segregation in society, Houyhnhnm is more tolerant towards providing its citizens with everything they want even though some of them might not need it as much as the other person. Thus, there exists harmony in a heterogeneous society as compared to a homogenous one seen in El Dorado.
Houyhnhnm is isolated from the rest of the world and does not know anything beyond its own society; the land is a world in itself and the people that reside there have no idea about the above and beyond; this gives them a sense of completion within themselves – they do not feel the need to know more people or interact with anyone else besides their own community. El Dorado, on the other hand, is not as isolated – it is aware that another world exists apart from itself and, thus, despite having a homogenous community, people seem the same and invite others into the community with as much enthusiasm; they do not indulge in any form of discrimination.
In conclusion, both lands have a very perfect setting; the people living there seem to be satisfied under the purview of the various constructive points discussed. However, they do have various differences among each other; this aspect was mentioned in the paper as well. The reader can, thus, easily identify the characteristics of the individuals living in the two places with respect to tolerance and the understanding of emotions as discussed.
Swift, Jonathan. Gulliver’s Travels. N.p.: n.p., 1745. Print.
Voltaire, Francois-Marie Arouet De. Candide. N.p.: n.p., 1778. Print.