Told in a series of letters, it is a story of a serving maid who is relentlessly pursued by her dead mistress's son. In defending her virginity so vigorously, Pamela, the first important English heroine to actually work for her living, rebels against the social attitudes which dictated that lower-class girls were not supposed to set a value on themselves. In this respect, and as a fictional tour de force which pointed out new directions in subject, style and form, Pamela is revolutionary. Dealing with matters as serious as the perversion of sex into power and the human need for freedom, it is also an absorbing, often comic, highly charged love story of two countrified, buptious, ignorant, egotistical and superbly human young people. This edition, based on the 1801 text and incorporating corrections made in 1810, makes Richardson's final version of the original two-volume novel generally available for the first time.