Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe Essay
Daniel Defoe 1660-1731 He was an English journalist, entrepreneur, pamphleteer, secret representative, novelist. He was a puritan and had interest in trade, which affected most of his works. He came from the neo-classical period and is the father of the English reasonable book. Robinson Crusoe This unique tells the story of a guy shipwrecked on a desert island. It is influenced by the different accounts of sea adventures which were published on papers and widely appreciated by tradesperson, merchants and middle class readers, who might not travel and see the world, but might immedesimate in the lead character and live his adventure.
What Defoe composed was a realistic and detailed description of a shipwreck, indicated to respect puritan worths, however he was not mindful of initiating a new genre. 1st extract: Robinson is shipwrecked and manages, with battle, to get ashore. He fights with the sea, however is not beat by the natural force, because with his own may he reaches the coast. He is puritan, so he has faith, clearheadedness, sense of self and is brave, reasonable, loaded with resources, all characteristics that assist him endure.
The description is told through ordinary and concrete words, with long and not-so-complex sentences, a factual and straight to the point language. Second extract: we see Robinson dealing with the finding of a print of a naked man’s foot on the coast. At first his surviving instinct prevails: he tries to search for someone who could have left the print, he’s logical. However after his mind starts to roam, he is overwhelmed by fear, stress and anxiety: he is puzzled, out of himself and begins to look all over in panic till he reaches his “castle”. The description of the print is very in-depth and precise.
Robinson’s doubts and fear are underlined through similes, when his capability to control his feelings and having the ability to respond is conquered by fear. We are likewise put in the same situation as the lead character: we do not know whose is the footprint, we may envision whatever we want and still don’t know. The worths represented in the novel are the common puritan worths of hard work, self enhancement, dedication. Middle class individuals, in reality, had to prove that they could reach financial security and improve their social position through practical work rather than mystic-something.
Robinson embodies the function of the self-made guy, who produced his fortune relying only on his abilities: he formed the environment to his will, he built himself a shelter, he made clothing, he domesticated wild animals, he grew his own garden. When he taught the savage, Friday, English language, Christian religious beliefs, worths and rules of the English society (and so he makes Friday his servant), he validates manifest destiny and the superiority of Englishman over colonized people: it is simply a spontaneous hierarchy, colonized people are primeval societies who need to be taught on the modern lifestyle.
Robinson’s experience is the journey of mankind from the cave-man to the successful colonizer. Defoe’s concern for realism originates from his job as a reporter (experience in reporting events that actually occurred with all the information) and from his puritanism. As a puritan he considered fiction immoral due to the fact that it had no purposes on education or religion. Defoe likewise comprehended well his reading public: he understood what they desired from his novels, they wanted to live through them adventures that they couldn’t have in reality, identifying themselves with the characters.