portnoy's complaint summary

It provides a thorough exploration of the novel’s plot, characters and main themes, including sexuality, shame and the contrast between the Jewish and non-Jewish worlds. Biography of Philip Roth With Richard Benjamin, Karen Black, Lee Grant, Jack Somack. [8], The publication of the novel caused a major controversy in American public discourse. Portnoy is "a lust-ridden, mother-addicted young Jewish bachelor",[4] and the narration weaves through time describing scenes from each stage of his life; every recollection in some way touches upon his central dilemma: his inability to enjoy the fruits of his sexual adventures even as his extreme libidinal urges force him to seek release in ever more creative (and, in his mind, degrading and shameful) acts of eroticism;[citation needed] also, much of his dilemma is that "his sense of himself, his past, and his ridiculous destiny is so fixed.

The affair with Mary Jane, which occupies more than half of the book, is hysterical yet mechanical, private yet desperately unaware, appropriately exhausted on a note of "poetic justice"—Alex becomes impotent, and in Israel.

Mary Jane Reed The truer one is best represented by the remarkable section called "Jewish Blues." The groundbreaking novel that propelled its author to literary stardom: told in a continuous monologue from patient to psychoanalyst, Philip Roth’s masterpiece draws us into the turbulent mind of one lust-ridden young Jewish bachelor named Alexander Portnoy. Pre-publication book reviews and features keeping readers and industry Philip Roth "[6], Structurally, Portnoy's Complaint is a continuous monologue by narrator Alexander Portnoy to his psychoanalyst, Dr. Spielvogel; Roth later explained that the artistic choice to frame the story as a psychoanalytic session was motivated by "the permissive conventions of the patient-analyst situation," which would "permit me to bring into my fiction the sort of intimate, shameful detail, and coarse, abusive language that [...] in another fictional environment would have struck me as pornographic, exhibitionistic, and nothing but obscene."[4][5]. Portnoy's Complaint Philip Roth, 1969 Knopf Doubleday 289 pp. [3] The novel tells the humorous monologue of "a lust-ridden, mother-addicted young Jewish bachelor," who confesses to his psychoanalyst in "intimate, shameful detail, and coarse, abusive language. The tone is at once nostalgic and embittered, rollicking and sad, and the juxtaposition of domestic conventions with the wild masturbatory fantasies of young Alex Portnoy, achingly accurate in every respect, including the highly colored one of the "castrating" Jewish mama, often equals the pathetic brilliance of some of the short stories of Gogol and Babel, besides being, in its rather idiosyncratic way, a closer look at the "generation gap" than anything that has yet appeared in print. RELEASE DATE: Aug. 26, 1946. [5], In 1969 the book was declared a "prohibited import" in Australia. [a] comic masterpiece, a glittering virtuoso performance. Philip Roth’s Portnoy’s Complaint, published in 1969, is the story of Jewish American bachelor Alex Portnoy, as told in a long, intense monologue, apparently to a therapist. Philip Roth Booklist Philip Roth Message Board.

There are two voices in Portnoy's Complaint, Philip Roth's quasi-autobiographical tour de force, though both voices are the voices of the hero.


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