With 'Robinson Crusoe', Defoe became the author of what is regarded as the first English novel, and created one of the most popular and enduring myths in literature.
The sole survivor of a shipwreck, Robinson Crusoe is washed up on a desert island. This gripping adventure story follows his struggle to survive, as he conquers isolation, fashions shelter and clothes, encounters another human being and fights off cannibals and mutineers.
With its fast-moving narrative and resourceful, sympathetic hero, this is a book of almost universal appeal. But his apparently artless tale also embodies a vast and complex economic doctrine which Karl Marx, amongst many others, has thought worthy of serious scrutiny. It is, moreover, a work of considerable moral and religious significance; a fine tension is set up between God's purpose and Crusoe's building human impulses , which Defoe expresses with superbly vibrant, haunting realism.