In this article, I argue that, although "Thing Theory" was not so named until the 21st century, and has been mostly applied to prose of the 18th century and not its poetry, Jonathan Swift and Lady Mary Wortley Montagu engaged in a poetic thing theory of their own. For Swift, this meant examining the "thingness" of physical objects, leading to an uncertain conclusion about the poem as an object. For Montagu, the "thingness" of objects was instead downplayed, while the "thingness" of the genre of 18th-century satire, including its often ugly attitude toward women, was foregrounded, asking important questions about just what type of "thing" a poem, and specifically a satire from the 18th century, really is.

Issue and Volume




To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.