Emma Tennant: The Adventures of Robina

(447 words)
  • Gina Wisker (University of Brighton)

Emma Tennant's The Adventures of Robina is really an autobiography of her own growing up. The novel uses the diction and register of an eighteenth-century text to record in picaresque fashion the naive adventures of red-haired, 15-year-old Robina. It follows the story of Robina, fresh down from her tight fisted relatives in Scotland, “finished” at a low grade, rather suspect finishing school, then brought out as a debutante in the season. Robina's easy seduction and consistent surprise at being tricked, misled, seduced and ripped off recalls Moll Flanders and Tom Jones, as well as Manon Lescaut. This novel makes amusing and clever use of such eighteenth-century testimony to explore truth and innocence, …

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Wisker, Gina. "The Adventures of Robina". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 25 October 2002
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=1637, accessed 25 September 2016.]

Related Groups

  1. Picaresque narrative