Joseph Andrews is Fielding's first novel, and although directed against Samuel Richardson's Pamela which was a great success, it is far from being a simple parody. To cite Fielding himself 'The fable consists of a series of separate adventures...all tending to one great end'- namely, the opposition of integrity and Christian decency to corruption and selfishness. The novel rapidly develops an original shape of its own, and extends the range of the novel form by its refusal to depend on exclusive and extensive identification with the sensibility of any central character. It is an early masterpiece of the genre - comic in its characterization, yet seriously enquiring in its vignettes of contemporary behaviour. While displaying Fielding's great comic gifts, the novel demonstrates his concern for the corruption of contemporary morality, religion, politics and literature. It depicts his presentation of love as charity, as friendship, and in its sexual sense.