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Friday, November 9, 2012

Philip Roth Has Retired

Posted by on Fri, Nov 9, 2012 at 11:44 AM

According to the Huffington Post, Philip Roth told a French magazine in an interview:

I do not intend to write for the next ten years. To tell you the truth, I'm done. Nemesis will be my last book. Look at E.M. Forster, he stopped writing fiction aged 40.

For quite a while there, it seemed that every new year brought a new Philip Roth book. Not all of them were great—I never got the appeal of Everyman, which I thought would've been an okay short story but felt awkward as a novel—but they were all at least interesting. A lot of writers come back from their retirement (Vonnegut published a few books after he claimed to be done the last time) but Roth says he hasn't written in three years. That seems pretty final to me.

 

Comments (6) RSS

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Jaymz 1
Not sure I'll miss Roth. He's done lots of good stuff, but sometimes I feel compelled to check him out and, like you, I'm not always satisfied. Since I have limited time to spread around, maybe this will free me up for newer, fresher voices.
Posted by Jaymz on November 9, 2012 at 12:26 PM · Report this
Bauhaus I 2
Frankly, I never much cared for Roth's stuff. He said some pretty homophobic shit early in his career which maybe he grew out of, but even as a young man, I couldn't rejoice - as others did - in reading Portnoy's Complaint or Goodbye, Columbus. I thought it was because I wasn't straight nor Jewish. Now I think it's because we just didn't click.

I suppose I should celebrate him being a serious novelist. There doesn't seem to be many of those anymore.
Posted by Bauhaus I on November 9, 2012 at 12:45 PM · Report this
3
E.M. Foster retired because he was tired of writing about the love lives of heterosexuals, when he would have been prosecuted for writing realistically about his own love as a homosexual.

Foster's last novel, Maurice, based, in part, on his life-long gay love affair, was only published in the 1970s, after his death.

Doubt that's Roth's reason for retiring, but oddly enough I haven't read much of his work since the 1970s.
Posted by judybrowni on November 9, 2012 at 12:45 PM · Report this
4
I won't miss him.
Posted by M. Wells on November 9, 2012 at 12:56 PM · Report this
5
I definitely will miss him. I disliked the fact that his male characters got older but his female characters didn't, he was a consummate writer. I'm afraid this is the beginning of his death. Someone like Roth doesn't quit writing unless he's about to lose his mind, in the literal not figurative sense.
Posted by sarah70 on November 9, 2012 at 5:58 PM · Report this
6
should be "but he was a consummate..."
Posted by sarah70 on November 9, 2012 at 5:59 PM · Report this

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