Identity and Difference: Coleridge and Defoe, Crusoe and Friday, Prospero and Caliban: Essay — Patrick J. Keane
Pat Keane’s casual and encyclopedic erudition has become legendary on the pages of Numéro Cinq. This time Pat goes after Defoe’s Crusoe (Friday) and Shakespeare’s Caliban, also Bloom, Coleridge, and Aimé Césaire, and fashions a dense, exhaustive and brilliant ramble through the arguments of identity criticism of, say, the last fifty or one hundred and fifty years. This is an essay bursting its seams with ideas and fine degrees of discrimination, a book-in-an-essay, as it were, explosive, wise and generous. And it all starts with Pat simply wondering why the anti-slavery Coleridge, who loved Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, never seemed to mention the fact that Crusoe is a slaver, odd oversight.