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Novel Atmographies: Eighteenth-Century Weather Writing and the Atmospheres of Robinson Crusoe

Novel Atmographies: Eighteenth-Century Weather Writing and the Atmospheres of Robinson Crusoe

Chapter:
(p.92) 4 Novel Atmographies: Eighteenth-Century Weather Writing and the Atmospheres of Robinson Crusoe
Source:
Air’s Appearance
Author(s):
Jayne Elizabeth Lewis
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226476711.003.0005

Daniel Defoe’s turbulent prose gives away his personal interest toward what he termed “the History and Reality of Apparitions,” not to mention his apparent interest in weather—both of which can be gleaned from his influential Robinson Crusoe. This and another of Defoe’s works, A Journal of the Plague Year (1722), both contain an expanse of environment and atmosphere that ushered British literary fiction into a new wave. Robinson Crusoe’s eponymous protagonist is shown to have a keen obsession with the bewildering atmospheric events occurring about him. In him is such a need to master the cycle of the seasons and decipher what it is that God is trying to tell him that he begins writing a journal to chronicle the weather. In this chapter, then, the author takes a deeper look at the atmospheric dimension of Robinson Crusoe in light of contemporary English weather writing.

Keywords:   atmospheric dimension, Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe, Reality of Apparitions, weather writing, English weather writing

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