Misfortunes Seldom Come Alone

Misfortunes Seldom Come Alone - 1 Misfortunes Seldom Come...

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Misfortunes Seldom Come Alone Roxana, the protagonist in Daniel Defoe’s seventeenth- century gothic novel The Fortunate Mistress , begins her autobiographical account with her and her five children delivered into a helpless state of woe, misery, and poverty by the elopement of her husband the brewer. Whereas the first man in Roxana’s life puts her in a precarious, seemingly powerless situation the second man, her landlord the jeweler, restores her life, faith, and bank account, as well as puts her on a pedestal of privilege. Nonetheless, the jeweler who Roxana claims, “[She] loved to a degree inexpressible,” leaves Roxana as well but this time it is not on a horse but in a casket (54). It is in this instance that Defoe’s Roxana is most perplexing. When being abandoned in one form or another, the way Roxana tackles each desertion is quite different: in the first instance she is poor and miserable but in the second she is quite rich and happy. Is Defoe saying that women of the seventeenth-century, bound by society’s perception of them as weak, dependent creatures, renders them capable of finding love only if they are guaranteed financial
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This note was uploaded on 03/25/2008 for the course ENG 260 taught by Professor Heckman during the Spring '08 term at Michigan State University.

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Misfortunes Seldom Come Alone - 1 Misfortunes Seldom Come...

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