Chapter

Towards the Last of the Race: Robinson Crusoe as Sole Survivor

Fiona J. Stafford

in The Last of the Race

Published in print June 1994 | ISBN: 9780198112228
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191670718 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198112228.003.0004
Towards the Last of the Race: Robinson Crusoe as Sole Survivor

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Daniel Defoe's explorations of individualism in Robinson Crusoe, the narrative of a single man who lives alone for years on a remote island off the South American coast, has made the narration obvious material for twentieth-century readers interested in seventeeth-century individualism, both in the economic and spiritual aspects. With the emerging emphasis on colonialism, familial patterns, and national consciousness, focus has been shifting more to the influence of the lost race, with which the solitary hero must not be defined. Defoe also explores the relationships between the lonely narrator, his family, and his native culture. Crusoe is an important forerunner of the last of the race owing to his prolonged experience of total isolation.

Keywords: Robinson Crusoe; individualism; sole survivor; race; isolation

Chapter.  13215 words. 

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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