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2 0 1 3 – 2 0 1 4
3 8 t h  A n n i v e r s a r y  S e a s o n

Founding Director: Joseph Cuomo

Tuesday, November 5, 2013, 7pm, Music Building, $20

The Work of Philip Roth
P H I L I P   R O T H
J A N I S   B E L L O W
R E B E C C A   N E W B E R G E R   G O L D S T E I N
S U S A N   J A C O B Y   &
C L A U D I A   R O T H   P I E R P O N T

PHILIP ROTH is a a recipient of the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, the National Book Critics Circle Award, the PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction, and the National Medal of Arts. Mr. Roth is the author of the collection of stories Goodbye, Columbus, and the novels Letting Go, Portnoy’s Complaint, My Life as a Man, The Professor of Desire, The Counterlife, Operation Shylock, Sabbath’s Theater, American Pastoral, I Married a Communist, The Human Stain, The Plot Against America, Exit Ghost, Indignation, The Humbling, and Nemesis. Arthur Schlesinger, Jr., writing in the New York Observer, has said of the work of Mr. Roth that it is “remarkable…remarkable in its stringent observation of American life, remarkable in its poignant sense of the contradictions and pathos of human existence, remarkable in its style and in its wisdom.” Milan Kundera, writing in Le Monde, has said: “Philip Roth is the great historian of modern eroticism… Roth speaks of sexuality that questions itself; it is still hedonism, but it is problematic, wounded, ironic hedonism. His is the uncommon union of confession and irony. Infinitely vulnerable in his sincerity and infinitely elusive in his irony.” Cynthia Ozick, writing in Contemporary Literature, has described the work of Mr. Roth as “totally amazing, in language, intellect, plotting, thesis, analysis, reach, daring…. A stupendous thing, before which much current fiction will seem diminished, shrunken. He’s now the boldest American writer alive.”

Janis Bellow
teaches the work of Philip Roth in the English Department at Tufts University, and she is also the author of the Preface to Collected Stories by Saul Bellow.

Rebecca NEWBERGER Goldstein is the two-time National Jewish Book Award-winning author of the collection of stories Strange Attractors, and the novels The Mind-Body Problem, The Dark Sister, Mazel, Properties of Light, and 36 Arguments for the Existence of God: A Work of Fiction, as well as the books of philosophy Incompleteness: The Proof and Paradox of Kurt Gödel and Betraying Spinoza: The Renegade Jew Who Gave Us Modernity. The Los Angeles Times has said: “[Goldstein] has written female characters as worthy of Philip Roth and Grace Paley as they are of their grand European progenitors—Shalom Aleichem and S.Y. Agnon.” The Times (London) has described the work of Ms. Goldstein as “possessed of a steely intellectual coherence that is frighteningly impressive to behold.” The Washington Post Book World has described 36 Arguments for the Existence of God as “a brainy, compassionate, divinely witty novel…. You’ve got to place this novel among the very funniest ever written.”

Susan Jacoby is the author of The Age of American Unreason, Alger Hiss and the Battle for History, Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism, and Never Say Die: The Myth and Marketing of the New Old Age. Jack Miles has described the work of Ms. Jacoby as “a magnificent, occasionally hilarious kick in the pants… Tough talk and wicked wit in the tradition of Richard Hoftstadter’s Anti-Intellectualism in American Life.” Arthur Miller has described the work of Ms. Jacoby as “fresh air for the lungs of those who defend the separation of church and state.” The Chicago Tribune has said: “Jacoby’s contribution is…to trace how the progressive Enlightenment values of rationality, devotion to the scientific method and tolerance and freedom of thought unraveled into today’s sorry charade of an empty-headed, circus-like media, declining rates of literacy and infiltration of public policy by religious zealots.” Marcia Angell has described Ms. Jacoby as “one of our most perceptive public intellectuals.”

Claudia ROTH PIERPONT is a staff writer for The New Yorker, and the award-winning author of Passionate Minds: Women Rewriting the World and, most recently, Roth Unbound: A Writer and His Books, which is forthcoming in October of 2013. Lorrie Moore, writing in The New York Review of Books, has described Passionate Minds as “one of the most ceaselessly interesting books I’ve read in some time.” Pauline Kael has said of Ms. Pierpont: “Her quiet intelligence is inspiring…. The best literary criticism written by a woman since the days of Virginia Woolf.”

Janis Bellow, Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, Susan Jacoby, and Claudia Roth Pierpont will discuss the work of Philip Roth (with Ms. Jacoby also serving as moderator), and Philip Roth will speak afterwards.

photo of Philip Roth: Nancy Crampton
photo of Janis Bellow: Jared Leeds
photo of Rebecca Newberger Goldstein: Steven Pinker
photo of Susan Jacoby: Marion Ettlinger
photo of Claudia Roth Pierpont: Daniel Aubury



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