Moll Flanders

Moll Flanders

Moll Flanders was a product of her vanity and pride. She devoted her entire life to achieving some sort of wealth and social status. Her pride encompassed her entire life and affected all of her life decisions. Moll sacrificed many things, including love, religion, self-respect, and peace of mind, in order to attain a sort of affluence. Eventually, Moll achieves her desires and retires a gentlewoman in America, but her journey definitely took a serious toll on her life. In the end, one must ask the question of whether Moll's lifestyle and decisions were the right ones. Did the ends justify the means? Did Moll's chosen path lead to a life of satisfaction or did the pain, paranoia, and emotional trauma that came along the way extract a price that is much greater then the wealth that she eventually achieved? The answer is that the suffering that Moll experienced was not worth the final outcome. Although Moll reached her goals in the end, she would have had a more fulfilling and gratifying life had she suppressed her vanity and price and accepted her role in society and lived accordingly.
Moll began life in the low class. Not much nobility or status was expected of the orphan born in Newgate Prison, and in English society, there was little chance for Moll to escape this class. But Moll had the blessing of the kind "nurse" who raised her, kept her out of the dreaded servitude, and found a high class family for Moll to live and grow up with. Moll was a beautiful girl and thanks to her "nurse" and this family, she was well along the road to truly becoming a gentlewoman. Had events continued flawlessly from here, Moll might have achieved her goal without any pain, suffering, or remorse. Unfortunately, this was not to be the case.
Moll's problems began with her relationship with the eldest brother. Her vanity and egoism allowed her to be seduced thus creating a serious conflict when the youngest brother sought her hand in marriage. Moll soon faced the dilemma of marrying Robin or faring for herself. Opting for financial security, Moll married a man whom she did not love. After Robin's death, Moll once again sought to marry a well to do man. She did just that and lived extravagantly for a few years until her husband was imprisoned for his debts. Once again, Moll was placed in a position of faring for herself or marrying for money and once again the marriage did not work out when her husband turned out to be her brother. Moll's marital circumstances continued to be troublesome until she was finally reunited with a man, Jemmy, whom she truly loved, even though he had little money. Had Moll declined to marry Robin and accepted that she might have to provide for herself until she found a husband who she truly loved, she could have avoided the pain associated with: mates who she did not love, being married to two men at the same time, and mothering children with her brother. In the end, none of the marriages that were based on monetary things worked out and Moll seemed to be in a worse position after each marriage ended.
Moll's vanity and desire for wealth led to pain other then that associated with marriage. Moll fell upon hard times when she found herself without a husband and subsequently began a life of crime in order to provide for her extravagant tastes. She started out as a small thief, first stealing merely for survival. After her first experience with theft, Moll tried to live a clean life using needlework to provide for her but eventually succumbed to temptations and stole again. She soon found that large amounts of money could easily be accumulated and Moll expanded her efforts. With the help of her governess, Moll soon became an enterprising thief and quickly amassed large sums of money. She used her numerous disguises and quick wits to avoid capture and she soon became the most notorious thief in all of England. Along the way, Moll discusses how she had become "hardened" and no longer felt remorse or guilt from her actions. She talks about how she never felt the need to repent of her actions. She also frequently referenced her paranoia and anxiety about being caught. She