Moll and Robinson have the same goal- economic survival but there’s a significant difference in their strategies. The novel shows the tough and emotionally draining journey of Moll Flanders who is born in Newgate Prison and abandoned at about a year-and-a-half. She has several marriages and children that haven’t worked out the way they should, she gets into criminal lifestyle and finally fulfills her greatly desired dream- to gain fortune and economic success. Her vanity and greed are the main focus of characterization.
Even as a young girl her desire is to become a gentlewoman which is almost impossible for a lower-class woman because of the rigid class lines in England in that period. In fact, that desire leads her into one misadventure after another throughout her life. According to her theory, a young girl in poor circumstances has the right to find support as best as she can and that motivates her strategies of economic survival. Money is the driving source in the book. It becomes more important than class, love, moral and everything else. Moll is determined to prosper without working and the best possible way is to marry a rich husband.
She sees people as commodities and her relationship with them as business transaction: “[…] as for their common design, that I understood too well to be drawn into any more snares of that kind. The case was altered with me, I had money in my pocket, and had nothing to say to them. I had been tricked once by that cheat called Love, but the game was over. I was resolved now to be married or nothing, and to be well married or not at all. ”(Defoe 52) For the heroine money is equivalent of freedom and men are the means of collecting it.
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She chooses husbands on the basis of their affluence or social class, takes money for prostitution, steals from children and from people in distress, and only when she is too old to do otherwise does she repent. In Moll Flanders vanity is the force that prevails over virtue. It is vanity that determines Moll’s behavior in the first part of the book. Moll’s vanity facilitates her seduction by the elder brother. It is also a strong motif which runs through Moll’s five marriages and numerous lovers. It is a factor which precipitates her decision to steal rather to remain poor and exist only by the honest labor of her needle.
In fact, all her actions are in some way linked to her vanity. Moll’s strategies of economical survival are not to be admired upon as everything she has achieved is thanks to lying, cheating, hurting a lot of people and committing crimes. Robinson Crusoe, on the other hand, has completely different ways of surviving. He learns to manage on his own and everything he has accomplished is because of his courage, faith, abilities and amazing survival skills. Both characters are interested in accumulating wealth. That’s why Robinson embarks on his journey to take part in trade but in contrast to Moll, he depends only on himself.
The heroine in Moll Flanders uses husbands for purely egoistical reasons. She lies about her fortune in order that they agree to be betrothed to her. She manipulates people and accomplishes her devious plan. When she’s left empty-handed after all of her victims she begins a career of artful thievery using her charm, beauty, wits, femininity, cold-heartedness and evil mind. Then it comes a time when she finally gets the financial security she has always sought but finds her punishment in the Newgate Prison where she gains repentance.
Just like Robinson, who deserted on a lonely island finds redemption and a clearer idea of the meaning of life, Moll also changes her point of view and reunites with the one she has most affection for- her “Lancashire husband”. She finds a way to avoid the death sentence and lives freely and happily with her husband. But even finding redemption and re-gaining humanity doesn’t cover the significant difference between her and Robinson. After all the time on that desolate island he retains his pure soul and clear mind. He doesn’t regret anything he has done because he has lived with dignity.
Conflict in America Euthanasia, also known as assisted suicide is a growing conflict in America and the world. Many people turn to it because they feel it is a way to gain control over their life, or put an end to it. They want to terminate the pain and suffering. They do not want to become a burden to their family and / or society. They need an environment that will make them feel wanted and ...
He gained prosperity on the island thanks to his strong hands and intelligent mind. That’s why Moll, aware of all her sins, can’t be completely happy at the end of the novel. After returning to England together with her husband she says that they are ready to live “in sincere penitence for the wicked lives we have lived. ”(Defoe 296) Unlike Robinson they will spend the rest of their time together contemplating all the wrong paths they have chosen during their robbery days. On the whole, Moll Flanders may be seen as a female version of Robinson Crusoe.
Like him, she is obsessed with economic survival and economic success. Unlike him, she prefers to sell her sexual favours or resort to crime- rather than work. The result of the acts she has performed to fulfill her intentions is the transformation of a beautiful innocent young girl into a hardened middle-aged criminal. By illustrating two characters with identical aim but completely different personalities and lifestyles, Defoe makes us think about what is right and what is wrong, how far we would go pursuing our goals and what price we are willing to pay for that.