FRIDAY: A handsome, in about 26 years old, with straight and strong limbs, tall and well-shaped fellow who bare name Friday which he got for the memory of a day he was rescued.
The native was saved from certain death by Robinson Crusoe during one of the cannibal rituals of a local tribe. By the man who was actually on his way to Africa to buy Negroes!
His hair was long and black but not curled, he had a very high forehead and great sparkling sharp eyes. Friday’s appearance was somewhere in between Negro and European, black but tawny skin, round face, and small but not flat nose as most of the Negroes have. Of course, as all Negroes have, had he fine teeth well set and white as ivory, but oddly enough – thin lips.
To lay his head flat upon the ground, close to person’s foot, and set other foot upon his head – this was Friday’s way of showing the servitude and submission. Robinson understood him in many things and let him know how very pleased he was with him. This was something Friday understood before he could speak Robinson`s language. Still, he was a cannibal in his nature, full of lot abhorrence.
We can see how the other culture is suppressed from the very beginning. Robinson cures Friday of his cannibalistic habits and gives him a new Western name. But the first words he taught him in English were words that one servant has to know and use!
So Friday was domesticated and incorporated into Western society. The main fear and an idea throughout the book is Crusoe’s goal to re-educate Friday to a civilized human being and if he wouldn’t have, he would have no mercy but to kill him! Submissive Friday, full of gratitude was treated with the attitude close to colonial that is – possession.
In my opinion, Friday’s total submission released Robinson from the sort of guilt and the need to use violence. He was Crusoe’s slave because he was saved by him and lifelong servitude was accepted by Robinson. The servant-master relationship was symbolically sealed by an oath, a substitute for the written contract.
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