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Username Post: Philip Roth Passes Away        (Topic#21566)
Posts: 4842
Loc: Philadelphia
Reg: 11-14-07
05-23-18 08:47 PM - Post#257128    

I know that we primarily discuss sports on this forum, but when one of if not the most recognized Bucknellians passes away, I think that it wouldn't hurt to mention something.

Philip Roth was Pulitzer Prize winner who has been described as the best post WWII American author. The BBC's obituary is much better that what I can do:

Obituary: Philip Roth, the author who scandalised middle America - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-art s-30537...

PhD Student
Posts: 1473
Reg: 11-18-09
Re: Philip Roth Passes Away
05-23-18 11:27 PM - Post#257131    
    In response to Bison89

A distinguished man ......too bad the obit forgot Columbus(er Lewisburg).

Posts: 14015
Reg: 01-23-06
05-23-18 11:36 PM - Post#257132    
    In response to Bison54

The only thing wrong with the BBC article is that it neglected to mention Bucknell. Roth stated on a number of occasions that two of the biggest influences on his life were Bucknell professors Mildred Martin and Jack Wheatcroft.

Here is an article with more info about his Bucknell roots:


Posts: 222

Reg: 03-07-06
05-24-18 10:33 AM - Post#257139    
    In response to Bison137

The NY Times obit is more complete, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/22/obituaries /phil... but even it had a hiccup. It originally noted Roth as attending "Bucknell College." It corrects it later, at least on the on-line version, acknowledging that it originally "misstated part of the name of Mr. Roth’s alma mater. It is Bucknell University, not College."

PhD Student
Posts: 1559
Reg: 11-11-07
05-24-18 09:17 PM - Post#257178    
    In response to BuffaloBison

I believe Indignation is a book that captures his time at Bucknell and Lewisburg best. Incidentely there is a portentous message in the book though Roth never intended his books to be allegorical, he simply set his books in historical time mostly wartime such as WWWII , the Korean and Vietnam wars, and the Bill Clinton era to name a few. But indignation is set in his undergraduate years of 1950 and the Korean War and the seeds of McCarthyism and at a school where the students were slightly repressed, the girls a little looney and the administrators uptight and stodgy.
Books are slowly becoming a thing of the past but the Korean situation and present day McCarthyism along with instant news are leading us tragically into a Roth-like ending without the fiction attached. Anyways, Indignation is the Bucknell go to book with The Human Stain a good academic read as well.

Posts: 4842
Loc: Philadelphia
Reg: 11-14-07
05-25-18 10:05 AM - Post#257187    
    In response to Paulie777

Paulie, you never cease to amaze me! Thanks for the recommendations.

Posts: 1

Age: 39
Reg: 06-29-18
07-01-18 10:13 PM - Post#258391    
    In response to Bison89

BU guy, came on to scout out recruits, next season, etc... Saw this topic and had to comment. An immense and incalculable loss to American letters. Thanks, Bison137 for the link, I thought I had been comprehensive in my obit readings, but that one escaped me. Likewise, I had thought my Roth reading rather comprehensive, but have to admit I have never read Indignation. I assure you that won't be the case for long. In terms of recommendations, I still think "The Plot Against America" is one of the most accessible, while still being a masterpiece. I would gladly debate for the title of best, but "American Pastoral," part of the annus mirablis of 96-97 (Infinite Jest by DFW, Mason&Dixon by Pynchon, Underworld by DeLillo, Towards the End of Time by Updike, Blue Flower by Fitzgerald, Puttermesser Papers by Ozick..), I think is well deserving of the title.

That said, I am very curious as to the response from the Bucknell community. Was there a ceremony on campus? The university has been robbed of what, in a perfect world, would be a flat-out, slam-dunk, Nobel laureate. They are not easy to come by. We live in an age where every shepherdess poet in the southern hemisphere is in line for a Nobel, but old, male geniuses on the East Coast of the United States have the odds stacked against them. I apologize; I'm not here to rant, but I hope the mourning in the Bucknell community is commensurate with the loss.

Regarding my original motive, I probably won't post here again, so good luck to the Bison next season.

Posts: 4641
Loc: Where the Bison Roam
Reg: 08-16-06
07-01-18 11:10 PM - Post#258394    
    In response to BUMedFootball

I confess to having never read our Roth; I'm all about nonfiction. Interesting to see the depth of your reverence, though.

You guys from BU are certainly welcome to post on our Bucknell University board. It's been fun having BU in the league: Always a great time visiting Case Gym and the city of Boston.

Speaking of which, I happened to bump into Coach Jones during the Final Four. I complimented him on his program and told him how much I love coming to Case Gym. He wisecracked, "Yeah, you love coming there because you keep beating us."

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