How is morality explored in Moll Flanders?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In his preface to Moll FlandersDefoe states that his intention is to convey a serious moral. Yet, explicit moralizing is notable by its absence in the relating of Moll's bawdy, picaresque adventures. Right throughout the story, Moll becomes caught up in all manner of escapades, none of which are in any way illustrative of the Christian moral life.

Moll is a serial thief and prostitute; worse still, from a moral point of view, she is an unrepentant serial thief and prostitute. Yet she does live by a moral code of sorts, often trying to rationalize her socially unacceptable behavior.

For instance, after she's robbed a drunken rich man she's just slept with, she convinces herself that perhaps the experience will prove instructive to the...

(The entire section contains 382 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team