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- KurzbeschreibungDaniel Defoe's bawdy tale of a woman's struggle for independence and redemption, Moll Flanders is edited with an introduction and notes by David Blewett in Penguin Classics.
Born in Newgate prison and abandoned six months later, Moll Flanders' drive to find and hold on to a secure place in society propels her through incest, adultery, bigamy, prostitution and a resourceful career as a thief ('the greatest Artist of my time') before her crimes catche up with her, and she is transported to the colony of Virginia in the New World. If Moll Flanders is on one level a Puritan's tale of sin and repentance, through self-made, self-reliant Moll, Daniel Defoe's rich subtext conveys all the paradoxes and amoralities of the struggle for property and power in the newly individualistic society of Eighteenth-century England.
Based on the first edition of 1722, this volume includes a chronology, suggestions for further reading, notes on currency and maps of London and Virginia in the late seventeenth century.
Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) had a variety of careers including merchant, soldier, spy, and political pamphleteer. Over the course of his life Daniel Defoe wrote over two hundred and fifty books on economics, history, biography and crime, but is best remembered for the fiction he produced in late life, which includes Robinson Crusoe (1719), Moll Flanders (1722) and Roxana (1724). Defoe had a great influence on the development of the English novel and many consider him to be the first true novelist.
If you enjoyed Moll Flanders , you might like Samuel Richardson's Pamela , also available in Penguin Classics.
- AutorDaniel Defoe
- SeriePenguin Classics
- VerlagPenguin Books Ltd
- Seiten454 Seiten
- Gewicht331 g
- LeseprobeThe History and Misfortunes of the
Famous Moll Flanders, &c. My True Name is so well known in the Records, or Registers at Newgate, and in the Old-Baily,1 and there are some things of such Consequence still depending there, relating to my particular Conduct, that it is not to be expected I should set my Name, or the Account of my Family to this Work; perhaps, after my Death it may be better known, at present it would not be proper, no, not tho' a general Pardon should be issued, even without Exceptions and reserve of Persons or Crimes.
It is enough to tell you, that as some of my worst Comrades, who are out of the Way of doing me Harm, having gone out of the World by the Steps, and the String2 as I often expected to go, know me by the Name of Moll Flanders; so you may give me leave to speak of myself, under that Name till I dare own who I have been, as well as who I am.
I have been told, that in one of our Neighbour Nations, whether it be in France, or where else, I know not; they have an Order from the King, that when any Criminal is condemn'd, either to Die, or to the Gallies, or to be Transported, if they leave any Children, as such are generally unprovided for, by the Poverty or Forfeiture of their Parents; so they are immediately taken into the Care of the Government, and put into an Hospital call'd the House of Orphans, where they are Bred up, Cloath'd, Fed, Taught, and when fit to go out, are plac'd out to Trades, or to Services, so as to be well able to provide for themselves by an honest industrious Behaviour.
Had this been the Custom in our Country, I had not been left a poor desolate Girl without Friends, without Cloaths, without Help or Helper in the World, as was my Fate; and by which, I was not only expos'd to very great Distresses, even before I was capable, either of Understanding my Case, or how to Amend it, nor brought into a Course of Life, which was not only scandalous in itself, but, which in its ordinary Course, tended to the swift Destruction both of Soul and Body.
But the Case was otherwise here, my Mother was convicted of Felony for a certain petty Theft, scarce worth naming, (viz.) Having an opportunity of borrowing three Pieces of fine Holland,3 of a certain Draper4 in Cheapside:5 The Circumstances are too long to repeat, and I have heard them related so many Ways, that I can scarce be certain, which is the right Account.
However it was, this they all agree in, that my Mother pleaded her Belly,6 and being found quick with Child
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