Philip Roth was one of the major American writers of the second half of the twentieth-century, chronicling the lives of Jewish Americans in the generations following WWII. His more than thirty books of fiction and nonfiction are known for their humor, eroticism, and psychological acuity. He maintained a long relationship with The Paris Review, publishing several of his first stories in early issues of the magazine in the fifties. He received our Hadada Award for lifetime achievement in 2010. His debut collection, Goodbye Columbus (1959), won the 1960 National Book Award, the first of many honors Roth would receive throughout his career, including the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize. Among his best-known works are Portnoy’s Complaint (1972), and the series of novels about Roth’s alter ego Nathan Zuckerman, beginning with The Ghost Writer (1979). In 2010, he published his final novel, Nemesis.
Philip Roth, a towering figure of twentieth-century literature, has died at the age of eighty-five. He had a long history with the The Paris Review. His story “The Conversion of the Jews” was pulled from our slush pile when Roth was just twenty-five years old, and published in issue no. 18 (Spring 1958).
Before Philip Roth was an American icon, he published one of his first short stories in The Paris Review in 1958. In 2010 he received the Hadada, our award for lifetime achievement. Here is his acceptance speech.