Sexuality and Morality in Samuel Richardson's Novel Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded Essay

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Sexuality and Morality in Samuel Richardson's novel
Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded

Samuel Richardson is a 18th century writer, famous for his three novels: Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded, Clarissa, or The History of a Young Lady and The History of Sir Charles Grandison. For the most of his life Richardson was an established printer and publisher. He wrote his first novel Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded thanks to a fortuitous turn of events, at the age of 51. Soon after that he became famous and admired writer. Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded is an “epistolary” novel – it takes the form of a collection of letters written by the characters, not in calm remembrance after the events, but to the moment, while the narrative is unfolding. In that way the
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Morality and religion play very important role in the novel. Moreover, they actually form the backbone of the educational task of the author. Pamela exemplifies to the young ladies from the working class how to act in a number of cases, and that's exactly what is needed in 18th century. When Mr. B. tries to seduce her, she resists, and the other important thing is that she writes to her parents for moral advice. At the end of every letter she adds “Your dutiful (or honest) daughter” to highlight her devotedness to her parents on the one hand, and to God on the other. Pamela's steady faith makes her strong enough to stick to her guns and to refuse to Mr.B to make sex before marriage. This weakens him and he proposes to her, although she is not from an aristocratic family. The religion is a kind of link between the working class and the aristocracy and from this comes the another desire of Richardson – to ruin the boundaries between the classes. Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded is a masterpiece of 18th century dealing with human psychology, serving as a study of ethics, with innovative narrative form which had fundamental impact on the novel as a literary genre. Thus the novel represent a case of early connection between literature as education and literature as entertainment. As Thomas Keymer writes:
“It would be little exaggeration to say that the brilliance of Pamela lay as much in commercial strategy as