chapter
Introduction: "As if I Had Been in a New World"
Pages 18

Like actual settlers, M o l l Flanders became a powerful woman who acknowledged the class and gender restrictions imposed on her yet still sought to improve her condition. Although M o l l F l a n d e r s does not describe the actual experience of a woman in colonial Virginia, the story does demonstrate a popular English view of what emigrant women could achieve in the colony. Readers and illiterate listeners could hear of the adventures of this New World woman and look at illustrations in abridged, "chapbook" versions of the story (see fig. I.l).