Moll Flanders Topics for Further Study
by Daniel Defoe

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Topics for Further Study

(Novels for Students)

Create a time line showing the major political, religious, social, scientific, and cultural events that occurred while Moll Flanders and Daniel Defoe lived (the late 1600s through the early 1700s).

Elizabeth Frye was an English prison reform activist who lived from 1780 to 1845. She especially worked to improve conditions for female prisoners at Newgate Prison. Investigate the prison reform movement in England and find out its history. Were there any prison reformers working during the time Moll Flanders was in Newgate? What were the typical conditions at a prison such as Newgate?

Syphilis and other venereal diseases were common in London during the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Research the prevalence of these diseases and how it compares to their current prevalence in London and in the United States. Examine how venereal diseases were treated during the time of Moll Flanders and how this compares to current treatments.

Choose an episode from Moll Flanders that you especially like, and write a script for a soap opera featuring the episode. Update the characters, setting, and events as you think appropriate to a present-day story.