For this week, I’m going to explore some of my favorite literary characters that I’ve learned from or desired to be throughout my life. The first one is Robinson Crusoe from the book Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe. While there is a large lost sea and survivor type of books such as The Swiss Family Robinson, The Hatchet, Treasure Island, and others that I read growing up, this was the book I always came back to. In terms of a book about survival there is so much information on things to do that I’m not sure I would even think about if I hadn’t read this book.
In addition to simply being a book about survival, Robinson Crusoe also spends time on the island trying to find himself and understand sort of the way society can continue to exist without him. I think I’ve always sort of had that struggle in my life where I want to find my place but question how much I really want to be part of society. While the tale of survival is clearly the most important theme, I think this societal question is one of the biggest themes as well.
Another great reason for appreciating Robinson Crusoe is in a way it describes a world that seems so foreign to today’s high technology world. The idea of living on an island with no electricity, completely unplugged from everything, while it seems scary it also seems so invigorating. Sure he was able to add some of the comforts of life. In that situation it’s more about adding the resources that will make life easier, not just for luxury. Which is interesting because one of the biggest reasons I like to read is to unplug from all the technology and disconnect from all the social media and just simply be. I read an article awhile back called living the Robinson Crusoe lifestyle, or something like that. The idea was rather interesting, it basically said to take everything you own and put them in boxes or storage containers of some kind and label the boxes. Then imagine that you where shipwrecked and you only had a limited amount of time to save your stuff… now what are the 10 boxes that you are going to keep? Everything outside of those boxes that you own are just luxury and you could live your life without them, so the article encouraged you to donate all of those things and live a life without luxury.
What is so important to your life that you would swim out to sea to save?