Daniel Defoes Novel The Famous Moll Flanders English Literature Essay

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The theme of the pursuit of economic success exerts great influence on Daniel Defoe’s works; this may be considered as a consequence to Defoe’s obsession for money and love to trade, which, he thought, could make him a wealthy and honourable gentleman. He carries that understanding away to his characters. It’s highly depicted in the story The Fortunes and Misfortunes of . the Famous Moll Flanders. The social and economic world in Moll Flanders presents a different glance of achieving aims. The heroine’s ingenuity and determination to survive draw readers into her divergent view how to do well. She is willing to sacrifice moral principles in order to prosper, Moll Flanders desires to “sell herself” at the highest price possible: marriage. You may ask why this glance is different.

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When her beauty fades and she does not attract the attention of men any longer, truly miserable she chooses to begin a career of wily thievery to survive. It would be by no means easy for Moll to make a living doing honest work, but she grows rich rapidly as a pickpocket. “As covetousness is the root of all evil, so poverty is, I believe, the worst of all snares.” Moll finds her key to success, her way to escape from that evil. However, her success is accompanied by loss of identity. As a result of her greed, Moll sacrifices her personal virtue, moral value and her own comfort. Because of her social and economic success, Moll sacrifices her soul. She steals, she seduces, she marries if necessary. I guess it will not be a surprise if I mention that Moll usually does not seem to think about God much. It appears that all days of her life are like devoted to the sin and almost none to the salvation.

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And he lives in harmony with its laws: “It was now that I began sensibly to feel how much more happy this life I now led was than the wicked, cursed, abominable life I led all the past part of my days”. Even though solitary, Crusoe has self-confidence of a successful man. Among the salvaging needful things from the ship that Robinson Crusoe takes in is also the Bible. The entire book is filled with religious aspects and shows how Robinson becomes closer to God and thanks him for his fate in which nothing is missing. This belief and the apparent superior morality of Crusoe (as he feels unjustified in holding the natives morally responsible for cannibalism) are at complete variance with the moral of Defoe’s heroine. The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders and The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe are truly significant novels of Daniel Defoe, which illustrate two characters both striving for material prosperity and proving that hardships of life prompt us how to survive. Still Moll Flanders and Robinson Crusoe are not all that similar. The first stands to me as a negative image because of her moral degradation and greed for money while Crusoe is the positive image seeking just for everyday necessities and absolution.

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