Rose Tremain

Sue Sorensen (Canadian Mennonite University)
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A novelist who creates striking and often unsettling characters, Rose Tremain is best known for her three historical novels,

Restoration, Music and Silence



The Colour

. Working within the realist tradition, Tremain's fiction refuses comfortable assumptions. She once said that “aspiration” is her subject, and it is true that longing permeates her work. Many of these longings are weighted with taboo – incest, sex between adult and child, suicide – but what is surprising is that her characters often overcome obstacles and achieve their desires. The result, however, is rarely fulfilment. The girl in

Sacred Country

, for example, who longs to be a boy, actually undergoes gender modification treatment. Although Mary/Martin gains some satisfaction, the suffering involved in the…

2449 words

Citation: Sorensen, Sue. "Rose Tremain". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 January 2005 [, accessed 16 July 2024.]

4447 Rose Tremain 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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