"Look.' Gulliver and Lilliputians. 'You're breaking the ruddy ...Anti-incarceration Act, or whatever it is.' "

A reference to Jonathan Swift's Gullivers Travels (1726) in which Gulliver awakes to find himself tethered to the ground and then lectured to by an imperious king who refuses to release him. The comparison is apt in a number of respects. 1.) Gulliver's request to be released is quite reasonable, but the response is one that has little to do with common sense and much to do with pettifogging bureaucracy. 2.) Gulliver's incarceration at the hands of the Lilliputians is defined by a kind of well-meaning coercion. Gulliver is fed, watered, patronized and subjected to a range of undignified inspections. 3.) His willingness to play their game is repaid with privileges ceded. 4.) Swift's famously scatological leanings find their correlative in Cavendish's humiliating incontinence towards the end of the book.  Gulliver's hygiene habits are called into question by the Lilluputians, who are most indignant when he urinates over the royal palace. Both texts, of course, contain great dollops of grotesque satire.

Gulliver's Travels on Book Drum