This Norton Critical Edition is again based on the first edition text (1722), the only text known to be Defoe's own. It is accompanied by detailed explanatory annotations and the editor's essay outlining the novel's textual history.
"Contexts" collects related documents on criminal transport, contemporary accounts of lives of crime, and colonial laws as they applied to servants, slaves, and runaways.
"Criticism" includes eleven interpretations by Juliet McMaster, Everett Zimmerman, Maximillian E. Novak, Henry Knight Miller, Ian A. Bell, Carol Kay, Paula B. Backscheider, John Rietz, Ann Louise Kibbie, John Richetti, and Ellen Pollak.
A Chronology and Selected Bibliography are also included.