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States of Trial : manhood in Philip Roth's Post-War America

Author: Ann Basu
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury Academic, An imprint of Bloomsbury Publishing Inc, 2015. ©2015
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"This study of five towering Philip Roth novels - Operation Shylock, the American Pastoral trilogy, and The Plot Against America - explores his vision of a turbulent post-war America personified in trial-racked Jewish American men. These works collectively register the impact of post-1945 upheavals upon the nation and American trial-based myths about wholesomeness and regeneration. Roth shows how the "stories of  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Named Person: Philip Roth; Philip Roth; Philip Roth
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Ann Basu
ISBN: 9781623562960 1623562961
OCLC Number: 879642574
Description: 189 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Introduction: Philip Roth's Post-war Americans in a State of Trial --
1. Turning Sentences Around: Trial Themes in The Ghost Writer, Zuckerman Unbound and The Anatomy Lesson --
2. Before the Law: Operation Shylock: A Confession --
3. Testing "Stories of Old" in Aerican Pastoral --
4. Undoing the Bildungsroman: Cold War Trials in I Married A Communist --
5. Spooking the American National Body in The Human Stain --
6. The Plot Against America and the Trials of the American Constitution --
Nemeses: Reworking the Trial for Post-war America --
Bibliography of Works Cited --
Index.
Responsibility: Ann Basu.

Abstract:

"This study of five towering Philip Roth novels - Operation Shylock, the American Pastoral trilogy, and The Plot Against America - explores his vision of a turbulent post-war America personified in trial-racked Jewish American men. These works collectively register the impact of post-1945 upheavals upon the nation and American trial-based myths about wholesomeness and regeneration. Roth shows how the "stories of old" which moulded American self-making have produced disorderly and disruptive counter-stories, playing themselves out in Jewish men marked by spots and stains where their constitutional integrity has been infringed. Roth probes the nation's own constitutional testing points as he shatters the identities of characters such as fallen ace athlete Swede Levov and disgraced academic Coleman Silk. His books seek to strip away America's false innocence, demanding that historical accountability should replace myths of new beginnings. Creating arenas of trial for his American men where national discourses and narratives cross and clash, Roth's novels reveal that a culture equals its debates and allow us to see Americans and America as ongoing experiments, always being tested"--

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Basu examines five of Philip Roth's later novels, from Operation Shylock (1993) to The Plot against America (2004) ... Basu's interpretations of his work are insightful if not groundbreaking. Summing Read more...

 
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