Defoe as novelist, novels as something new

During our last discussion of Defoe I mentioned, briefly, Defoe’s place in the history of the novel. (It’s hard to overestimate, for instance, the influence and longevity of his best-known novel, Robinson Crusoe, but he was the author many other popular works, including the one we’re reading.) Here’s a post I wrote on this topic in 2012. It includes Benjamin Franklin’s comments on what felt new about novels.

Image of Defoe’s collected works via.

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