In portraying his father’s cultural world in The Facts (1988) an autobiography and perhaps the best thing he ever wrote about the development of his writing, Philip Milton Roth observed: “His repertoire has never been large: family, family, family, Newark, Newark, Newark, Jew, Jew, Jew. Somewhat like mine.” This from a writer who refused to be labeled as a “Jewish writer”. On the last page of Roth's subsequent memoir Patrimony (1991), he revisited the theme of paternity in relating a terrifying dream that followed the burial of his father, an assimilated secular Jew who had never exhibited any particular inclination toward faith. Responding to the mortician's request that he c…
Omer-Sherman, Ranen. "Philip Roth". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 25 August 2004; last revised 22 October 2018.
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