The use of satire in literature refers to the practice of making fun of a human weakness or character flaw. The use of satire is often inclusive of a need or decision of correcting or bettering the character that is on the receiving end of the satire. In general, even though satire might be humorous and may “make fun”, its purpose is not to entertain and amuse but actually to derive a reaction of contempt from the reader.
Examples of satire:
George Orwell’s Animal Farm – In this political allegory, Orwell uses animals to satirize the Russian Revolution and the rise of Stalin’s dictatorship.
The Simpsons – This long-running animated sitcom uses satire to comment on American society and culture, often through exaggerated and absurd scenarios.
Jonathan Swift’s A Modest Proposal – In this essay, Swift uses satire to propose that the poor Irish should sell their children as food to the rich English, in order to solve Ireland’s poverty problem.
The Daily Show with Trevor Noah – This satirical news program uses humor and irony to comment on current events and politics.
Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – Twain uses satire to criticize the racism and hypocrisy of American society in the mid-19th century.