Cast Away/Robinson Crusoe Comparison Essay

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Both Robinson Crusoe and Cast Away are stories with similar plots and elements, though they are told in different times, and thus reflect different facets of their contexts. The values and beliefs of the composer are shown through the text, and the social, cultural, and historical context of the time are a major influence as well. The novel extracts of Robinson Crusoe, written by Daniel Defoe in the 18th century, show a different attitude towards values such as religion and capitalism than the 2000 film Cast Away. Despite these differences, there are many similarities in the values of the stories, even with their vastly contrasting contexts. A major value of Robinson Crusoe is religion and the importance placed upon it in the time the novel was written. In Defoe’s time and society, religion was an integral part of people’s lives, and this is shown strongly in Crusoe. Throughout the novel, the idea of God’s Providence is repeated, and it is shown that Crusoe has great faith in religion, to the point where he believes that it is what brought him to such good fortune on the island. “I admired the hand of God’s Providence, which had thus spread my table in the wilderness.” The imagery of a table spread with the necessities for survival, especially in a situation such as this, reinforces Crusoe’s, and by extension Defoe’s, belief in the mercy and providence of God. As a contrast to this, the value of religion is not as explicitly stated in Cast Away. Noland is not shown to be religious at all, though there are certainly undertones of faith in the film. For Noland, religion is not linked to the concept of a particular deity, but rather religious ideals such as faith and hope. While on the island, Noland creates a shrine-like arrangement centred on his pocket watch, which contains a photo of his girlfriend, Kelly. Close up shots focused on the photo are used to show

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