Critical Essays Use of Defoe's Experience


Many of the descriptions given in Moll Flanders are tautly drawn because of Defoe's personal experience with poverty and imprisonment. They are vivid and accurate accounts seemingly based on total recall of incidents and people he met. Later his confinement in Newgate Prison provided him with detailed encounters with thieves and their various thieving techniques, which he probably took down in his own version of shorthand during his interviews with them.