- Prime Student members get an extra 10% off this product. Here's how (terms and conditions apply)
Roxana The Fortunate Mistress n/e (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – 10 Jul 2008
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Special offers and product promotions
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Roxana is possible Defoe's most fascinating story-teller and this, one of his most intriguing stories. (The Daily Telegraph)
From the Back Cover
Almost three hundred years after its first publication, Roxana continues to challenge readers, who, though compelled by Roxana's story, are often baffled by her complex relationships to her children, her fortune, and her vices. As one of Daniel Defoe's four major fictions, Roxana has long been understood as central to the history of the novel, and provides readers with Defoe's sharpest and most specific commentary on the complexities of life in seventeenth-century London. This edition offers a range of contemporary documents that will help readers understand the struggles of Roxana's life as series of metaphoric engagements with pressing issues of her time.--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition. See all Product description
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
Daniel Defoe who lived from 1660 – 1731, was a fascinating historical figure: he was a rebel in Monmouth’s Rebellion in 1685, to his work as a spy, and his books A Journal of the Plague Year and Moll Flanders. I thoroughly enjoyed this story. Published in 1724, and in the first-person as a memoir, “Roxana” describes her youth, marriage to a man she constantly refers to as “a fool” and the dire straits she found herself in following her abandonment by this man (the brewer).
I would, however, recommend potential readers seek the full 1745 edition – as this gives a fuller ending (a common cause for complaint is the abruptness of the ending in the original and in the abridged versions). I also disagree with those ready to label this "feminist" or "proto-feminist" as this book was very much before the movement began. Yes, "Roxana" becomes a woman of independent means, but in my opinion, it is surely wrong to use a 20th-century label on an 18th-century book.
For Roxana, `Poverty was my Snare', `the dreadful Argument of wanting Bread'. And, `Poverty is the strongest Incentive; a Temptation against which no Virtue is powerful enough to stand out.'
What saves Roxana from a certain early death is her beauty, her sex-appeal: `In une Deshabile you charm me a thousand times more.'
With her beauty she amasses a fortune. After being a slave (`comply and live, deny and starve'), she is free (`the sweetest of Miss is Liberty'): `that while a Woman was single, that she had then the full Command of what she had, and the full Direction of what she did.'
She abhors the institution of matrimony and prefers to be a Mistress: `A Wife is treated with Indifference, a Mistress with a strong Passion; a Wife is looked upon as but an Upper-Servant, a Mistress is a Sovereign.'
But what ultimately brings Roxana down is religion and its correlative, remorse: `the Sence of Religion, and Duty to God, all Regard to Virtue and Honour given up ... (I was) no more than a Whore.'
Remorse makes her look after her abandoned children, but this quest turns into a tragedy.
Like `Moll Flanders', this more moralist text constitutes a formidable portrait of the `horrid Complication' to be a woman.
Not to be missed.
Abrupt ending of the tale in two sentences was quite unexpected and that too from an author beloning to Swift period.
I give two marks only.
muralidharan madras India
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews