In this novel, Henry fielding illustrates numerous types of characters that represent the great majority of people in the 1800s. However, fielding focuses precisely on the quality of Affectation that rises from vanity and Hypocrisy that is represented through several characters, especially Lady Booby. Furthermore, the author scorns lady booby throughout the story for continuously making herself ridiculous because of her hypocritical actions and motives. In this novel, there are some incidents that prove Lady booby’s piteous hypocrisy and affected piety. What should be established at the very begging is that Henry Fielding portrays his social experience with people in the 18th century in his novel through the various types of characters from every aspect of society, enabling his readers to explore the unpleasant aspects of it. Hypocrisy, for example, is represented by Fielding through his character ‘Lady Booby’ who’s avaricious and Hypocritical.
Furthermore, lady booby has lost her spouse at the outset of the story. From here onwards, Lady booby starts to disguise her passion for Joseph Andrews to avoid censure, by concealing her wickedness under an appearance of their opposite virtues which eventually leads to making herself an object of ridicule. In fact, Henry Fielding considers hypocrisy to be a much worse vice than vanity . For instance, in book one chapter five, Lady booby called Joseph to come into her room to bring her tea as an excuse to ensure her full vindication from what she was about to commit from impudence and immodesty. As he got in, she starts seducing him obliquely but to no avail. As soon as Joseph refuses her sexual advances, she tried to reverse circumstances against him by disguising her initial inclination into fear by accusing him of bad intentions towards her. She affectedly told him “suppose you should have wicked intentions upon my honor, how should I defend myself?’.
This highlights Fielding’s major theme of hypocrisy and affectation. Another instance made by Fielding, when Lady Booby invited Mrs. slip slop to come into her room so she could ask her for her impressions and inclinations towards Joseph to which Mrs. slip slop replied “I’m afraid, he is a wild young fellow”. She also accused him of drinking and gambling and most importantly of, as she describes “wenching” which grabbed Lady booby’s attention who then proceeded to discharge Joseph. In addition, she tried failingly to seduce him into kissing her again and with no purpose, he refuses to respond. As a result, she discharged him completely as she was offended by him and sat despised of herself for the meanness of her passions. Henry fielding states his point of view accurately on most characters, most notably Lady Booby who proved to be a strong example of Hypocrisy and affectation in fielding’s novel. He also wanted to teach the readers a lesson in morality through these examples; not to lose their self-control simply in the face of lust and desire.
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