Thursday, February 14, 2019
Daniel Defoes Robinson Crusoe and the Protestant Work Ethic Essay
Robinson Crusoe and the Protestant Work Ethic The boloney of Robinson Crusoe is, in a very obvious sensory faculty, a morality story ab unwrap a wayward but typical youth of no particular talent whose life turned out exclusively secure in the end because he discovered the importance of the values that truly matter. The values that he discovers are those associated with the Protestant Work Ethic, those virtues which arise out of the Puritans sense of the religious life as a total commitment to a calling, unremitting service in what in the main appears as a very restricted but often contend commitment. The central concern of Robinson Crusoes experiences on the island is work. The great majority of the textual matter is taken up with describing his unceasing efforts at mundane tasks. Robinson Crusoe is clearly burning to persuade his readers that he was never idle. Many of his undertakings may have been inconstant (like his first big boat, which he could not move to the wa ter), but they unbroken him busy. We baron wonder to what extent he needs to do all the things he describes for us, like, for example, making bread or living off the defecate he creates through his own agriculture. Is there no natural sustentation on the island which might be obtained with less labor? What about fishing? Wouldnt that be easier? He tries it and has success, but he doesnt tick with it. Why not? Surely, given the topical nature of the island, he doesnt have to labor so much? Questions like this miss the point. Robinson Crusoe is a tribute to work, and the overwhelming message is God has put us on this world to work. That, in effect, means directing our energies to transform the world just about us, to shape it to our will, t... ...ing it with a secret kind of pleasure (though mixed with my other(a) afflicting thoughts), to think that this was all my own, that I was king and schoolmaster of all this clownish indefeasibly and had a even out of possession and if I could convey it, I might have it in inheritance, as completely as any lord of a manor in England. (101) The language of this quotation is interesting. He admits he takes pleasure in his accomplishment, but theres a sense of guilt in the admission (he has to remind us that he besides has afflictions). And he frames his feelings of satisfaction entirely in legal terms (indefeasibly, right of possession, convey). What stimulates his satisfaction is not the accomplishment or the beauty or the sense of his own proven skill, but the sense of legal ownership. He has gone from a castaway to the equivalent of an aristocrat.