Re: Moorcock work: common threads?
I suppose that the common thread, if there is one, is that the moral compass in Moorcock's world sways not between Good and Evil but between order (Law) and Chaos. Many of the characters in his fantasy novels (This includes Elric, Hawkmoon, Corum and Jerry Cornelius at the very least)are merely separate incarnations of 'the enternal champion' whose ultimate destiny it is to restore the balance between law and chaos should one side dominate. Arguably Jerry Cornelius doesn't qualify as 'fantasy' being set in the 20th centuty, but he was definitely supposed to be yet another incarnation of said champion
This mythos is much more explicit in his fantasy novels, but I once read a non-fantasy novel of his called Mother London which was quite interesting. very episodic with a multitude of characters, but set predominantly in the modern era there were no references to law, chaos balance etc, nevertheless it did seem to be infused with a similar philosophical perspective.
The idea that it is more fruitful to strive for a healthy balance between order and chaos than it is to constantly strive to be good is an interesting moral perspective, and definitely seems to be to be a more enlightened, sophistcated, human and practical one.
I read huge amounts of his fantasy books as a teenager but didn't stumble accross mother london untill I was into my thirties, so it was an interesting find given the changes in my tastes over the years.
Having said all that, Moorcock is certainly one of the more prolific writers in the SF milleu,so I wouldn't even being to try to suggest that i have a handle on the full variety of his works....