"Casualties and Disasters": Defoe and the Interpretation of Climactic Instability

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Great Storm of November 26–27, 1703, that struck Southern England and Wales became a benchmark throughout the eighteenth century for the destructive potential of Nature. This article examines Daniel Defoe's 1704 text The Storm, a compilation of reports of damage from across England that Defoe prefaced with a long introductory essay about his own experiences and speculations about the causes of the disaster. Defoe and his correspondents offer important analyses of the relations among humankind, landscape, and climate, even as they set their remarks in the context of eighteenth-century theology. Ultimately, The Storm seeks to reconcile its scientific and religious impulses by resorting to an eco-cultural materialism that emphasizes the complex feedback loops between landscape, climate, and human activities.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)102-124
JournalJournal for Early Modern Cultural Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2008


Dive into the research topics of '"Casualties and Disasters": Defoe and the Interpretation of Climactic Instability'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this