Robinson Crusoe vs Pride and Prejudice
Robinson Crusoe Daniel Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe (1719) is one of the most important novels of the eighteenth century, and of the English literature. It is certainly the first book in the sense that it is the very first fictional narrative in which the common individual’s activities are the centre of continuous literary attention. Prior to that, in the early eighteenth century, authors like Pope, Swift, Addison and Steele recalled to the Rome of Caesar Augustus (27 BC– 14 AD) as a golden age. That period is called the Augustan age. Literature was really various considering that it focused on mythology and legendary heroes.
Nevertheless, to what level can Robinson Crusoe be called the “first novel” and how is it various from all that have been done so far? Besides, what are the developments in the unique category causing Victorian novels, like Pride and Bias published almost one hundred years later (1813) in regards to style, themes and concerns? Augustan authors, before Daniel Defoe, were extremely protective of the status quo and their novels were philosophical and religious, based upon a misconception of the everlasting fitness of things. By contrast, Defoe meant advanced change, financial individualism, social movement, trade, and freedom of awareness.
For Swift, Defoe was “the fellow that was pilloried, I have actually forgotten his name.” He represented at once a social literary and intellectual difficulty to the Augustan world, and the Augustans reacted to him accordingly. In Robinson Crusoe, Defoe deals with major points of Western civilisation like trade, mercantile capitalism given that at that time, a great attempt was made to dominate other continents, spread out culture, beliefs, like for example, when Robinson tries to convert Friday into Christianity, as he considers him a savage. In the eighteenth century, British financially depended on slave trade, which was abolished on the early 1800s.
Therefore, Daniel Defoe recognized with this practise, although he did not actively criticise it. There is as a result not a surprise that, Robinson deals with Friday as his servant. Nevertheless, Crusoe is able to recognise Friday’s humanity, though he does not see his slavery as a contradiction. Robinson Crusoe was written in a context of a European colonialism well developed around the world. Next, material wealth suggests prestige and power in Robinson’s mind. For instance, he frequently lists his possessions, like the amount of land ploughed, his arrangements, and he keeps the coins discovered on different wrecks.
On top of that, he calls his “base,” his “castle” and eventually considers himself as a “King.” Therefore, product power is an essential element as well as faith and faith in the novel. Robinson declines his dad’s suggestions and spiritual mentors at the start of the unique, in order to travel and have some experience and wealth. Although, his shipwreck can be thought about as a moral penalty and his disobedience as a sin, the lead character did build up wealth and did endure at the end of the book.
Hence, the reality that he was penalized can be argued and gone over. Robinson’s viewpoint about religious beliefs is extremely clear. He is a puritan and tries to spread his convictions on the island to convert into Christianity Friday, who is extremely reasonable. The hero just declines Friday’s own beliefs, believing that his faith is the best one. This idea might be due to the reality that British people believed that they had a right and a task to send their knowledge, culture and faith.
By contrast, Pride and Prejudice was written a century later on, and therefore, the concerns were no longer the very same. In Jane Austen’s unique, there is a total shift to everyday life and society’s issues. The author reveals the ethical basis of daily life, and shows how “the regular events of the world, no less than excellent actions, were centred on ethical conventions, ethical judgement and moral option” so that, residing in such a society needed a continuous will and intellect to manage the self and comprehend others.
Differently from Daniel Defoe, her main concern is her emotional centre, not Robinson’s economic adventure. The shifts of interests are primarily brought on by a change in society and a transformation in people’s minds. In Austen’s times, the most essential thing is not the person in itself however much more, the individual living in a society strongly hierarchical, and based upon a strong and deeply rooted system of class. That difference can be pointed by the two openings of Pride and Bias on the one hand, and Robinson Crusoe on the other hand. It is a reality universally acknowledged, that a single man in belongings of a good luck, should be in desire of an other half. However unknown the feelings or views of such a male may be on his very first entering a neighbourhood, this reality is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered as the rightful residential or commercial property of some one or other of their daughters. […] “I was born in the year 1632, in the city of York, of a great family, though not of that country, my dad being a foreigner of Bremen who ettled first at Hull. […] The option of words plainly reveals that the 2 books will deal with various point of views: the person in Robinson Crusoe and the relation of the individual and the society in Jane Austen’s Pride and Bias. To carry on with Pride and Prejudice, marriage and money were 2 frequent themes in Victorian individuals’s minds, as revealed with Mrs Bennet, who in the really first chapter claims, “business of her life was to get her daughters wed. In Austen’s plot, the Bennet children are in genuine risk if they do not wed and find a house considering that the obsequious Mr Collins will inherit the house after Mr Bennet’s death. Therefore, marriage is the only exit for the Bennet children. Cash is seen as a possible development in the Victorian society, similarly in Robinson Crusoe where trade may be perceived as a benefit for a society in expansion. Nonetheless, we have simply seen that both novels deal with the question of individual. Robinson Crusoe is clearly based upon the specific and his accomplishment.
The protagonist is stranded on an island, and has to endure and live decently entirely on his own resources. This stress on individual is in keeping with humanism, an important function in the early eighteenth century. “There exists an immutable human essence, normally called ‘humanity’ which is traditionally invariable, and our understanding of it embodied in Western literature.” Human nature is held to process great prospective for self-respect and mobility. In Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, just a couple of characters actually appear in the plot.
We can quote Robinson Crusoe, Friday, the English captain, the Portuguese Captain who saved Crusoe when he left from Sallee, the Widow … There are obviously less characters than in Pride and Bias. Defoe likewise highlights people’ emotions such as worry, anger, misery, hope and relief. Nevertheless, Robinson just values Friday as a devotedly and trustworthy servant, and does rule out him a buddy. There is no space for love, since there are no female characters associated with the plot. We are portrayed a manly world where ladies have nothing to do in it.
On the contrary, Austen was interested in person’s problems and especially in women’s issues shown by interactions with others and primarily through the 2 lead characters: Elizabeth Bennet and Darcy Fitzwilliam. As the title of the novel suggests, the intrigue is structured around both ideas of “pride” and “bias.” Elizabeth needs to overcome her bias against Darcy to actually value his own character and clearly translucent him, beyond looks and others’ viewpoints like her mom’s. On the other hand, Darcy needs to forget Elizabeth’s social rank and the truth that she has no “connection” in order to really value her.
Because way, these 2 characters resemble “round” characters since they develop and progress learning by their problems and by recognising they were wrong. Besides, Jane Austen does not hesitate to criticise the society and the system of class in which she lives, buffooning at Mr Collins and his way he resolves individuals. He uses a very complicated speech, totally unsuitable to the circumstance, like for instance his proposal to Elisabeth: “My factors for weding are, initially, that I believe it a best thing for every clergyman in easy situations (like myself) to se the example of matrimony in his parish.
Secondly, that I am persuaded it will add really significantly to my happiness; and finally– which perhaps I ought to have actually discussed previously, that it is the specific guidance and suggestion of the really worthy woman whom I have the honour of calling patroness. […] Because proposal, Mr Collins has no feeling at all towards Elisabeth, and his speech is far more determined we could expect. It is like a mathematical presentation stressed by the style since, as Jane Austen says in chapter 15, “Mr Collins was not a sensible man, and the shortage of nature had been however little helped by education or society. Hence, style is crucial in an unique to photo characters’ behaviours. Nevertheless, both books’ writing is significantly various. Initially, regarding the storyteller perspective, Robinson Crusoe is composed in the first individual particular. As a consequence, we constantly have Robinson’s point of view and opinion about the occasions happening. We have to question whether the protagonist, through which the story is explained, may be reputable or not, and if we can trust him. If we had Friday’s viewpoint instead, it is clear that we would have a total different opinion about Robinson.
By contrast, in Jane Austen’s Pride and Bias, an omniscient narrator knowing definitely whatever tells the story. Subsequently, the author can excite some dramatic irony producing spaces between what the reader understands and what the characters understand, like for example, the fact that we understand that Darcy likes secretly Elisabeth, whereas the heroin does not understand that. Jane Austen controls the plot and in some cases intervenes to question the reader, and criticise some questionable points. The very best example is the first sentence opening the novel which remains well-known: “it is a reality niversally acknowledged, that a single male in possession of a good fortune, need to be in desire of a better half.” (p. 1) She plainly criticises the way that society works shimmering off some irony because sentence, since society works the other method round. Nonetheless, in a single sentence, she currently tackles with concerns like money and marital relationship. Secondly, the 3rd individual narrative voice enables Jane Austen to put into practise her showing-telling method. She describes the characters (informing) by, simply letting them speak, their personality being rendered by their method of speaking (proving).
The most relevant example is Mrs Bennet’s behaviour. She is described as a complete “absurd” person, gossiping and only interested in weding her daughters. For instance on the first page, Mr Bennet has a talk with his spouse: “My dear Mr. Bennet,” said his woman to him one day, “have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?” Mr. Bennet replied that he had not. “But it is,” returned she; “for Mrs. Long has simply been here, and she informed me everything about it.” Mr. Bennet made no answer. “Do not you wish to know who has taken it? cried his other half impatiently. “You want to inform me, and I have no objection to hearing it.” This was invite enough. “Why, my dear, you must know, Mrs. Long says that Nether field is taken by a boy of large fortune from the north of England; that he came down on Monday in a chaise and four to see the location, and was so much happy with it that he concurred with Mr. Morris instantly; that he is to take possession before Michaelmas, and a few of his servants are to be in your house by the end of next week. Additionally, “for quick impacts and subtle shifts of focus, Austen’s language half assumes the mode of thought and expression of her characters, so that their consciousness are seen, filtered through the main authorial intelligence, and more can be comprehended from the authorial tone-of-voice than from simple report.” Moreover, using the 3rd person voice, Jane Austen keeps us much in the dark about Darcy’s character so that during our very first reading, we are likewise misled by his habits, as Elizabeth is herself, pushing us to believe that he is very proud and hoity-toity.
Austen does that by “screening the majority of our impressions through Elizabeth in order to bring off the chief remarkable result of the story,” overwhelming surprise at his very first proposal. Finally, there was a specific development in between the 2 books in the construction of the plot itself. Pride and Prejudice’s story is far more complicated, considering that the events are intermingled and are triggered by others or are the repercussions resulting in other turmoils.
Nonetheless, at the end, everything is fixed, and every plot has an answer: Elizabeth weding Darcy, Lydia marrying Mr Bingley, and Charlotte Lucas dealing with Mr Collins without loving him. Contrasting this causality, we can say that Robinson Crusoe looks like an epistolary story. During a number of pages, Robinson even continues telling his experiences through a journal, in the chapter “The Journal.” That technique could have been affected by the reality that Daniel Defoe was likewise a journalist. Concisely, Defoe’s plot is simpler with just one main plot arousing the reader’s creativity more than possible burning concerns.
To conclude, Robinson Crusoe is an unique in itself, since it includes all the characteristics: characters, plot, and narrative voice. Nevertheless, the concerns and the styles in 1719 were not the like in 1813 since Daniel Defoe and Jane Austen did not live in the very same world and society at all. On the other hand, Austen perfected the techniques of dramatic-presentation, socially evaluated language, which were necessary to deal with the predicament of private ethical choice and the relation in between people and society in the bourgeois world. Later on, in 1871, George Eliot’s Middlemarch appeared.
This unique concerns problems of rank, credibility and marital relationship and it observes in a realistic method the characters, and the entire community from nobility to tradespersons. Realism was an essential idea, very crucial given that Austen’s times, and this was a deed which will go down in literature’s history. BIBLIOGRAPHY 1. Corpus Austen, J. Pride and Bias. 1813. London: Heron Books, 1968. Defoe, D. Robinson Crusoe. 1719. London: Penguin Popular Classics, 1994. 2. Secondary Texts Babb, H. S. Jane Austen’s Novels: The Fabric of Discussion. London: Archon Books, 1967. Skilton, D. The English novel: Defoe to the Victorians.
Newton Abbot: David and Charles, 1977. 3. Even More Reading David, D. ed. The Cambridge Companion to the Victorian Novel. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001. Loveridge, M. A history of Augustan fable. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998. Secord, A. W. Studies in the Narrative Method of Defoe. New York: Russell and Russell, 1963: 9-108. Sherbo, A. Research in the Eighteenth Century English Novel. Michigan: Michigan State UP, 1969: ch. 10. Skinner, J. An Intro to Eighteenth-Century Fiction. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 2001. Spaas, L. Robinson Crusoe: Misconceptions and Transformations. Basingstoke: Macmillan, 1996.