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Robinson Crusoe (1719)

by Daniel Defoe

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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20,036268139 (3.57)540
During one of his several adventurous voyages in the 1600s, an Englishman becomes the sole survivor of a shipwreck and lives for nearly thirty years on a deserted island.
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» See also 540 mentions

English (240)  Spanish (8)  Dutch (5)  Swedish (4)  French (4)  Italian (2)  Danish (1)  Catalan (1)  Finnish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (267)
Showing 1-5 of 240 (next | show all)
Daniel Defoe's most known work remains a contender for the first ever English novel, up against Aphra Behn's OROONOKO and John Bunyan's PILGRIM'S PROGRESS, et al. I take the position that Behn's superb work falls in with history and Bunyan's masterpiece takes its place among allegory. Yet Robinson Crusoe isn't free and clear of contention: Defoe's struggle between journalism and novel are apparent. Much of the book reads like a travelogue, while the rest is set down in the dry detail of unedited field journalism. In fact, the work is almost devoid of exposition and memory; everything we read about happens without the timeline of the book. But Defoe does manage to give us a great, memorable character who comes into conflict not just with nature and other people, but chiefly with himself and with God. Beneath the ostensible episodic adventure story is a tale of attaining self-knowledge. Interestingly, the anticipated dénouement occurs about 50% of the way through the book, leaving the reader to wonder what Defoe will do with the remaining 200pp or so, depending on the edition. Well, it's mostly more travelogue, but with a very intriguing scene of the tension and possible reconciliation (or tolerance) between Catholicism and Protestantism. We also get a neat little microcosm of the politics of colonialism. Crusoe and his story have qualities we've seen before: Don Quixote (published a little over a century prior, and whom Crusoe references explicitly via metaphor) and Ulysses (in Tennyson's depiction, for example: "I cannot rest from travel"). Overall, an abridgment would lend itself well to the lay reader. ( )
  chrisvia | Apr 30, 2021 |
H.H. 50
  BSH-Nordli | Apr 28, 2021 |
L'arcinota storia del naufrago Robinson fornisce al lettore molta materia di riflessione. In primo luogo pone più volte l'accento sulla personale responsabilità delle proprie scelte, a fronte di un destino sempre sconosciuto che, nel suo misto di sorte e provvidenza, solo un attenta valutazione può consentir di vagliare e solo un atteggiamento improntato alla giusta misura, affrontare. In secondo luogo consente di gettar uno sguardo sull'uomo ricondotto allo stato di natura e alla quotidiana lotta per la sopravvivenza e consente di ragionare su quali siano le reali necessità della vita e quali quelle puramente futili o accessorie. Una storia, insomma, che pone ognuno di noi a riconsiderar il senso della propria esistenza e il suo rapporto con un eventuale creatore e con la Provvidenza che ne diviene la più limpida manifestazione. ( )
  Carlomascellani73 | Apr 5, 2021 |
Even 300 years after its first publication, this book entertains. Crusoe's cleverness and inventiveness help him survive on the island. His time in isolation him lets him reconnect with his faith and reconsider his wayward morals. The book doesn't have as interesting a beginning or ending, though, and is a bit too colonialist. ( )
  KGLT | Mar 21, 2021 |
An Englishman who has been stranded on a desert island for 28 years. With the supplies he is able to save from the ship that was lost during a violent storm, Crusoe ends up building a fort for a house and then creates for himself a mini paradise with his own work and effort in taming animals, harvesting fruits, planting and hunting. He recreates a civilization, with all its comforts and economy, except in the absence of human companionship. It is a time of hardship and learning to have faith in God for Crusoe, as he examines the beliefs with which he was raised.

After living alone for twenty years, Crusoe finds a human footprint in the sand and soon finds a tribe of cannibals. During his confrontation with the fierce warriors, he rescues a black man who would have been killed by them. Crusoe names this man Friday and treats him like a servant at first due to the color of his skin. A common view in imperial England at the time. However, the author treats Friday and the other "savages" as true human beings. Crusoe flees the island when a rebel ship sails to the coast. He helps the British captain to regain control of his ship and, in return for his service, receives transportation back to England.
Considered the first English novel, Robinson Crusoe is an adventure classic, in fact, it is the prototype of such novels, but with a more careful look, you will see thoughts about the importance of civilization, faith and friendship. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Feb 19, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 240 (next | show all)
“Robinson Crusoe,” though, remains something truly special: It belongs in that small category of classics — others are “The Odyssey” and “Don Quixote” — that we feel we’ve read even if we haven’t. Retellings for children and illustrations, like those by N.C. Wyeth, have made its key scenes universally recognizable.... A classic is a book that generations have found worth returning to and arguing with. Vividly written, replete with paradoxes and troubling cultural attitudes, revealing a deep strain of supernaturalism beneath its realist surface, “Robinson Crusoe” is just such a classic and far more than a simple adventure story for kids.
A friend of mine, a Welsh blacksmith, was twenty-five years old and could neither read nor write, when he heard a chapter of Robinson read aloud in a farm kitchen. Up to that moment he had sat content, huddled in his ignorance, but he left that farm another man. There were day-dreams, it appeared, divine day-dreams, written and printed and bound, and to be bought for money and enjoyed at pleasure. Down he sat that day, painfully learned to read Welsh, and returned to borrow the book. It had been lost, nor could he find another copy but one that was in English. Down he sat once more, learned English, and at length, and with entire delight, read Robinson... It was the scene of Crusoe at the wreck, if I remember rightly, that so bewitched my blacksmith. Nor is the fact surprising. Every single article the castaway recovers from the hulk is “a joy for ever” to the man who reads of them. They are the things that should be found, and the bare enumeration stirs the blood.
added by SnootyBaronet | editCornhill Magazine, Robert Louis Stevenson
Crusoe has been called a kind of Protestant monk, and it is true that he turns the chance of his isolation into an anchorite’s career. The story is one of spiritual realization — almost half a lifetime spent on contemplation works profound changes, whatever the subject’s religion. We can watch Crusoe become, year by year, a better, wiser man... Robinson Crusoe may still be the greatest English novel. Surely it is written with a mastery that has never been surpassed. It is not only as convincing as real life. It is as deep and as superficial as direct experience itself.
added by SnootyBaronet | editSaturday Review of Literature, Kenneth Rexroth

» Add other authors (286 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Defoe, Danielprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Abbott, Elenore PlaistedIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Anthony, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
AviForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Becker, May LambertonIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bown, DerickIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Casaletto, TomNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cortázar, JulioTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Crowley, Joseph DonaldEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dell'Acqua, EdgardoIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duvoisin, RogerIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eguía, Marta SusanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Falké, PierreIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Finnemore, J.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Grandville, JeanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hadden, J. CuthbertIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Herder, RonaldEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keith, RonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kelly, James Williamsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kredel, FritzIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miller, Norbertsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Paget, WalterIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pocock, Guy N.Introductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Richetti, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ross, AngusEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rowlands, WilliamTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Swados, HarveyAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vincent, OdetteIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ward, LyndIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilson, Edward ArthurIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Winter, MiloIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woolf, VirginiaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wyeth, N.C.Illustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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"I was born in the year 1632, in the city of York, of a good family, though not of that country, my father being a foreigner of Bremen, who settled first at Hull: he got a good estate by merchandise, and leaving off his trade, lived afterward at York, from whence he had married my mother, whose relations were named Robinson, a very good family in that country, and from whom I was called Robinson Kreutznaer; but, by the usual corruption of words in England, we are now called, nay, we call ourselves, and write our name Crusoe, and so my companions always called me.
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During one of his several adventurous voyages in the 1600s, an Englishman becomes the sole survivor of a shipwreck and lives for nearly thirty years on a deserted island.

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Book description
Robinson Crusoe, the highly acclaimed novel by Daniel Defoe, is a literary classic which is enjoyed by readers of all ages. The story deals with the life of a middle-class Englishman who forsakes convention to pursue his ambition to go to sea. After surviving capture by Turkish pirates and escaping from enslavement, he embarks on his pivotal voyage. The young Crusoe is shipwrecked on an island and for twenty-four years is a solitary castaway. Emerging from the background of a romantic adventure story is Defoe's exposition on isolation, self-reliance and companionship. Since 1719 this book has enticed an audience who, like Crusoe, long to be free from the constrictions of society.
Robinson Crusoe was interested in adventures and he wanted to spend his life on the adventure. One day one of his friends asked him if he wants to be sail...and then his story will begin.
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Average: (3.57)
0.5 11
1 102
1.5 18
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2.5 56
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Penguin Australia

4 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141439823, 0140367225, 014119510X, 0141199067

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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