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Moll Flanders | Study Guide

Daniel Defoe

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Check out this Infographic to learn more about Daniel Defoe's Moll Flanders. Study visually with character maps, plot summaries, helpful context, and more.

Sources:, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Moll: The Life and Times of Moll Flanders by Siân Rees, The Rise of the Novel by Ian Watt Copyright © 2017 Course Hero, Inc. Moll Flanders, Section 3 oney only made a woman agreeable. Punishment & Redemption Redemption and atonement are hard to come by intimes of need. Moral Ambiguity Context determines whether behavior is right or wrong. Pragmatism Practicality beats love, while opportunism beats morality. Themes Men in Moll’s life; some honest and upstanding, others selfish and unreliable Husband & Lovers Charming, handsome scoundrel; the fourth of Moll’s five husbands and her final companion Jemy Middle-aged, no-nonsense, steadfast friend to the downtrodden, including Moll The Midwife Self-reliant, opportunistic, mischievous woman; repents only when she’s old and wealthy Moll Flanders Main Characters Considered the father of the English novel, Defoe studied to be a minister, became a merchant, declared bankruptcy, wrote essays, and was imprisoned for a political pamphlet he wrote—all before he turned to writing novels. His negative experience being tried and convicted for libel inspired Moll Flanders. DANIEL DEFOE1660–1731 Author Moll reconciles with her favorite husband and finds redemption. Redemption Economic necessity forces Moll into a life of crime. Crime Pays Moll uses beauty to secure men who offer the financial stability she desires. Romantic Escapades Because of her humble birth, Moll Flanders struggles to gain financial stability in a patriarchal society. Pragmatic to the core, she justifies her many crimes and romantic escapades as necessary. But in the end, Moll achieves wealth, finds love, and repents. A Tale ofQuestionable Morals OVERVIEW English Original Language 1722 Year Published Daniel Defoe Author Moll Flanders Drama Novel

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