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Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe. Ed. Evan R. Davis. Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 2010. Pp. 442. $13.95. ISBN: 978-1-5511-1935-9.

Benjamin F. Pauley

NOTES

1. There were, Davis notes, six identifiable editions between late April and early August 1719—even before the appearance of the Farther Adventures—though the title pages of the third and fourth editions both read “The Third edition,” while the title pages of the fifth and sixth editions, similarly, both read “The Fourth edition.”
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2. Michael Shinagel pursues a similar textual policy for the Norton Critical Edition. John Richetti, by contrast, articulates plausible reasons for his somewhat more liberal treatment of the first edition text for the Penguin edition (which dispenses with many initial capitals and regularizes—though without modernizing—that edition’s inconsistent spellings).
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3. In a piece for the alumni magazine of Hampden Sydney College, Davis notes that he approached the annotation of Defoe’s text by asking his students what sorts of things they felt they needed to have explained and enlisting their aid in tracking down answers to questions that they themselves raised (Davis 2010). The notes are, as a consequence, well suited for first-time readers of the novel who may have little background in writings of the period.
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4. Though Crusoe instructs Friday to call him “Master” and sets him to work as though his labor were entirely at Crusoe’s disposal, Friday is not precisely Crusoe’s slave—Crusoe calls him many things (“my savage,” “my man,” “friend,” and “faithful, loving, sincere Servant,” as Davis notes [27]), but never a slave. Even in the famous scene in which Friday places Crusoe’s foot on his head “in token of swearing to be [Crusoe’s] Slave for ever,” Crusoe does not exactly endorse the label (218).
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5. The Norton Critical Edition also provides supplementary readings, and there is a small amount of overlap between the Broadview’s choices and the Norton’s: both offer multiple accounts of Alexander Selkirk, both include Defoe’s Preface to the Serious Reflections (as does the Oxford World’s Classics edition), and both include an excerpt from Charles Gildon’s The Life and Strange Surprizing Adventures of Mr. D— De F— (1719). The Norton edition, of course, provides excerpts from scholarly treatments of the novel, whereas the Broadview focuses on primary contextual documents. Davis does include a lengthy and good bibliography for further reading. Students wishing to pursue research on the novel will do well to begin with the leads that he provides.
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6. At least two of the images (the first and third) are drawn from French translations, for instance, and it seems significant that the “sixth” edition of 1722 (from which the second image is drawn) was the first to be “adorned with cuts” (as the title pages of both the octavo and duodecimo issues indicate).
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