Plot summary[ edit ] Born in France, from which her parents fled because of religious persecution, Roxana grew to adolescence in England. At the age of fifteen, she married a handsome but conceited man. After eight years of marriage, during which time her husband went through all of their money, Roxana is left penniless with five children. Another poor old woman whom Roxana had aided during her former prosperity adds her efforts to those of the old aunt and Amy.
See also Robinson Crusoe Criticism. Moll Flanders is a central text in the English canon and has inspired debate and analysis on issues such as Christian moral virtue, capitalism, legal reform, and feminism.
Through her, Defoe creates a novel uniquely fascinating among his works for both readers and critics alike. Biographical Information Defoe was born in North London in His father was a butcher and candle merchant. However, after three years he left the academy and entered the merchant world, marrying the daughter of a wealthy businessman.
He then secured a position in a brick factory. It was at this time that he became politically active and began to publish his first essays. He was sent to the pillory and served six months in jail before he was pardoned by Queen Anne. Troubled by lingering financial problems, and perhaps feeling betrayed by his allies in the Whig party, Defoe then began a political career with the Tory government, becoming the sole writer of the propagandist journal The Review His political activity shifted with the collapse of the Tory government in ; by he was working as a secret agent for the Whigs, and continued to do so for fifteen years.
It was during this period that he published all of his best-known novels, including Robinson Crusoe and Moll Flanders. Defoe continued to write novels, histories, handbooks, and essays until his death in Moll is born in the London prison of Newgate and given to gypsies, who leave her at the age of three in the hands of the Parish at Colchester, England.
After growing up in the house of a poor nurse, Moll comes under the care of a rich family and falls in love with the elder of two brothers in the household. At the same time, the younger brother falls in love with Moll and eventually she marries him, an experience that leaves her forever disillusioned with love.
Moll then marries a sea captain and sails with him to Virginia. Here she begins an affair with a married gentleman that continues for six years before he finally leaves her, promising to take care of their only child.
At this point, Moll becomes informally engaged to a married accountant pending his divorce, but in the meantime marries another gentleman in Lancashire who, it turns out, is not able to support her. She subsequently marries the accountant and lives with him until his death five years later.
Moll supports herself for two years, until she is reduced to poverty and, in desperation, turns to a life of crime. Growing accustomed to thievery, she becomes a master criminal until she is caught and imprisoned at Newgate, where she finds her Lancashire husband, who by this point has become an infamous robber.
They both avoid the death sentence, Moll because she is penitent of her former life, and are transported to America, where Moll accumulates a fortune and lives to an old age.
Major Themes The issues central to Moll Flanders are broad and complex, ranging from the psychology of the protagonist to the social and political order under which she lives.
The form of the novel itself is primarily that of a criminal autobiography, and the ways in which Defoe works within and deviates from this tradition is seen as significant by many critics. The text also contains many observations and arguments about specific political issues ranging from legal reform to marriage laws to the living conditions of street criminals in London.Moll’s repentance is a christian style device for controlling her fear of punishment for her crimes (Zimmerman).
A very detailed breakdown of seven main themes . An Analysis of Moll Flanders - An Analysis of Moll Flanders The novel is about the realistic experiences of a woman in the underworld of 18th century London. Essays and criticism on Daniel Defoe's Moll Flanders - Critical Essays.
Moll Flanders study guide contains a biography of Daniel Defoe, literature essays, a complete e-text, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. Day 1(*) Unit: Anglo-Saxon/Old English. 1. (*)Print out your grading sheet for the first quarter or use the Excel version.
Keep a vocabulary notebook and/or notecards for terms you will be . Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe Essay - Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe Moll Flanders was a product of her vanity and pride.
She devoted her entire life to achieving some sort of wealth and social status.