Robinson Crusoe

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Written by Daniel Defoe and first published in 1719. Probably inspired by real-life castaway Alexander Selkirk.

A classic novel about the title character's adventures after being shipwrecked on a deserted island, the plot for Robinson Crusoe is pretty complex in terms of events, with the main character's learning important survival skills, fighting off cannibal natives, rescuing a prisoner (Friday, who becomes his assistant/friend -- who is not black, as many depictions show him to be, but a Carib Amerindian) and various other adventures. It was an immediate success after its first release, which inspired various sequels and a whole lot of imitators and stories using similar storylines.

There was also a sequel, The Further Adventures of Robinson Crusoe, and a collection of essays/part 3, Serious Reflections of Robinson Crusoe, and well... since the story has become public domain, quite a few recycled versions IN SPACE and the like.

Tropes used in Robinson Crusoe include:
  • The Aloner: Crusoe spends most of his time on the island alone, something that almost drives him crazy due to loneliness.
  • Bittersweet Ending: if not Downer Ending - he returns to civilization, but Friday dies, he has no family or other friends, and has troubles accommodating.
  • The Cavalier Years (The time period)
  • Day of the Week Name (Friday)
  • Deconstruction: in JM Coetzee's rather excellent Foe.
  • Deserted Island (Very, very obviously used)
  • Girl Friday: trope namer (albeit, the trope namer is a male)
  • Heroic BSOD: Has one when he almost dies of disease, but eventually snaps out of it.
  • Long Title (The Life and strange Surprizing Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York, Mariner: Who lived Eight and Twenty Years, all alone in an un-inhabited Island on the coast of America, near the Mouth of the Great River of Oroonoque; Having been cast on Shore by Shipwreck, where-in all the Men perished but himself. With An Account how he was at last as strangely deliver'd by Pyrates. Written by Himself)
  • Plot Hole There's a very famous one involving Crusoe swimming out to the ship naked... and then filling his pockets with biscuits.
    • Although it's stated that he searches for, finds and takes most of the crews clothes.
  • Public Domain Character : Well, it's been nearly 300 years since it was first published, so this is to expected.
  • Recycled IN SPACE! (One of the many ripoffs/clones/whatever)
  • Robinsonade (The Trope Namer. Probably brought about most of this genre of the story)
  • Salvage Pirates
  • Small Secluded World
  • Sole Survivor (Robinson Crusoe)
  • Very Loosely Based on a True Story: The Ur Example of the trope.
  • Wooden Ships and Iron Men