Linguistics and Literature Studies Vol. 1(1), pp. 15 - 19
DOI: 10.13189/lls.2013.010103
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Language and Lying in Roxana: the Last of Defoe's Fiction

Okey Goode*
Humanities, Lewis-Clark State College, Lewiston, ID 83501, United States


Defoe, as religious dissenter and writer of fictions, sought to ally moral pronouncement with mimetic representation of material conditions.His character-narrators typically detail the wicked behavior they are driven to for survival as a prelude to repentance. In his final novel, Roxana, however, Defoe confronts his narrator's exploitation of the gap between the referential language of experience and the "internally persuasive" [Bakhtin] conventional discourse of repentance. Once Roxana dethrones "the sovereignty of an original Text" [Foucault], she manipulates the language of repentance to authorize her self-serving sexual license. Defoe cannot resolve the narrative by her repentance. The implications of the split between speech and act may lead Defoe to recognize the similar disjunction between the allure of his character's adventures and his goal of moral instruction. Unable to ally the truth of human experience with the truth of dissenting repentance while ensuring that "the Fable is always made for the Moral" [Defoe], he abandons fiction.

Defoe, Roxana, Lying

Cite This Paper in IEEE or APA Citation Styles
(a). IEEE Format:
[1] Okey Goode , "Language and Lying in Roxana: the Last of Defoe's Fiction," Linguistics and Literature Studies, Vol. 1, No. 1, pp. 15 - 19, 2013. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2013.010103.

(b). APA Format:
Okey Goode (2013). Language and Lying in Roxana: the Last of Defoe's Fiction. Linguistics and Literature Studies, 1(1), 15 - 19. DOI: 10.13189/lls.2013.010103.