The Eighteenth-century literature is popular for its peculiar style of writing that gives the readers an insider’s view in the novel. By combining the two aspects such as Psychological and Presentational Realism, authors have created works of pure masterpiece such as Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe. Defoe illustrates Moll, the protagonist’s psyche by writing the narrative in the first person to imply it as an autobiography. This allows psychological realism to work at its finest since the readers can feel a personal relationship to the character. The two important instances that occur with this type of realism are when Moll realizes that she is married to her own brother and her meeting with Humphrey, her son. In addition, Defoe also uses Presentational Realism to describe Moll’s initial career as thief with her first episode at the apothecary’s shop and later stealing a gold necklace from a child. The manner in which the setting is described gives the readers a sense of feeling of being there and at the same time experiencing her escape from the scene.
Amongst Moll’s several relationships, she is married to a plantation owner, who owns property and has mother and a sister in America. The couple decides to move to Virginia to be with the family (Defoe 77). Moll’s describes that she lives in marital bliss and also enjoys the company of her mother-in-law. She exclaims “…I thought of myself the happiest creature alive…” until her world is shattered as she portrays herself being “…most uncomfortable in the world” (78). As she is listening to the story of her mother-in-law being a transported felon to Virginia from Newgate prison in London and sudden...
... middle of paper ...
...hough she may not have kept in touch with her son. She is overjoyed by meeting him, which gives the reader a sense of hope that the story will end on a positive note. On the other hand, presentational realism is shown through Moll’s darker side when she turns into a thief to support herself and live lavishly. Her description of her deeds and exact account of what she acquires amazes the readers. The reader can connect to her by being a thief and at the same time passing moral judgments upon her. Some may congratulate her on being slick enough to steal from an apothecary shop while others may criticize her for robbing a little innocent child. Regardless of various opinions, Defoe’s narrative style involves the reader in the story, which makes it interesting to read.
Defoe, Daniel. Moll Flanders. New York: Signet Classic Penguin Books USA Inc, 1996.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe Three recurring themes in Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe are greed, vanity, and repentance. Theme is defined as an underlying or essential subject of artistic representation. These three themes play an important role in the development of the story of Moll Flanders. The first theme, greed, is shown in Moll's acts of prostitution. Moll turns to thievery in many instances to support herself. She also allows her morals to disintegrate; a result of her greediness.... [tags: Moll Flanders Daniel Defoe Essays]
1150 words (3.3 pages)
- 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. Her pride encompassed her entire life and affected all of her life decisions. Moll sacrificed many things, including love, religion, self-respect, and peace of mind, in order to attain a sort of affluence. Eventually, Moll achieves her desires and retires a gentlewoman in America, but her journey definitely took a serious toll on her life.... [tags: Moll Flanders Defoe Essays Papers]
1163 words (3.3 pages)
- Daniel Defoe wrote the first English novel; a novel is a book of length with one unifying element. It was considered a new form of writing that was not yet developed. Most novels are picaresque, meaning the plot centers around a series of adventures for a character. Daniel Defoe wrote the novel, “Moll Flanders.” It was a novel about the adventures of a girl’s life from beginning to end; however, it was not divided into chapters. The word “moll” actually meant “mother,” and the word “flanders” meant “cloth.” Defoe also wrote an excerpt about two ladies who were taken onto a ship as prisoners; they were deemed “pyrates,” and they actually existed.... [tags: Daniel Defoe, Novel, Newgate Prison]
845 words (2.4 pages)
- In order to explain how the main character Moll Flanders in the extract of Defoe’s novel ‘The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders’ is an example of picaresque, one might start by defining the meaning of picaresque. The Oxford English Dictionary definition reads as follows: “[Adjective] relating to fiction dealing with the adventures of a dishonest but appealing hero. – ORIGIN Spanish picaresco, from picaro ‘rogue’” The picaresque hero, however, can more generally be described as a person who does not comply social standards and fits the role of an outsider.... [tags: Moll Flanders, Daniel Defoe, Theft, Sociology]
1096 words (3.1 pages)
- In Daniel Defoe’s Moll Flanders, the protagonist's rollercoaster journey began with her birth in the Newgate prison and ends in England where she lives the rest of her life repenting her sins. Along her journey, Moll Flanders meets many people as she attempts to avoid the deadly snares of poverty prevalent in the seventeenth century. Throughout her life, she fails to form emotional attachments with most of the people she encounters. However, Moll Flanders forms an everlasting relationship with the governess who helps her deliver an unwanted child and helps her survive as a single woman.... [tags: pregnency, criminal, wealth]
1424 words (4.1 pages)
- In Moll Flanders, the main character, she believes money makes the world go round. In this novel the novelist tried to show hardship and the bad luck that women breed being irresistible to men struggling women determined not be defeated by a cruel world. “Many critics and historians argue that a woman named Elizabeth Atkins, a notorious thief who died in prison in 1723, was one of Defoe’s inspirations for the character of Moll Flanders.” (“Moll Flanders”) Most of Moll’s actions are due to the need and desire for money.... [tags: elizabeth atkins, women]
902 words (2.6 pages)
- Criticism of Moll Flanders How should readers interpret the seeming contradictory character that Daniel Defoe presents in Moll Flanders? Is her penitence a construction of irony? While the question of irony was prominent in the earlier criticism of the 1950s and 1960s, most scholars have moved away from that question, acknowledging the existence of various types of irony and validating the true reformation of Moll. Critics are now articulating other subtle and complex authorial strategies in Moll Flanders besides the use of irony, crediting Defoe with more of what it takes to be a "father of the novel." Newer critical methodologies involving class and gender are also playing a r... [tags: Moll Flanders Essays]
1355 words (3.9 pages)
- Radical Views of Defoe Exposed in Moll Flanders Daniel Defoe is a proponent of the unorthodox in his novel Moll Flanders in which he shapes many aspects of Moll's life after those of his own. The concepts he puts forth in the work are radically different from beliefs customary to seventeenth century England. Appealing to and championing the common man, Defoe constructs an iconoclastic piece that praises a common woman. In spite of gender differences, Moll mirrors Defoe's life. Defoe draws on his past, when he served time in debtors' prison after his business as a merchant failed. He traveled to cities where he would become free from his creditors (Monarch Notes). It is fr... [tags: Moll Flanders Essays]
532 words (1.5 pages)
- George Eliot wrote, "It is never too late to be who you might have been." As I read those words, I was hard pressed to find another who fit them as well as Moll Flanders. Despite circumstance and luck and odds set against her at every turn, this woman refused to bow to the conventional wisdom that normally rules the downtrodden and the dispossessed. And it is in that tenacity of spirit I find Eliot's words ringing true. Moll Flanders born into a world of pad-locked doors and dark menacing corners was destined for greatness simply because she lived it.... [tags: Moll Flanders Essays]
463 words (1.3 pages)
- Moll Flanders is an excellent story about one woman's evolution from a poor economic status to a, later, mid-class caste in life. Moll Flanders used her meticulous cunning in order to survive in the 18th century. She started out with a tabula rasa, or clean slate, when she is born, but, eventually, she resorts to an immoral life in order to survive. When she learns that her husbands die very quickly, but give her money for having sex with them, she turns to a life of whoredom. This choice, however, was only done as an instinct to survive.... [tags: Moll Flanders Essays]
798 words (2.3 pages)