Philip Roth's very literary novels, most famously Portnoy's Complaint
, have always had the feel of confessional autobiography. Operation Shylock
boasts not only a character named Philip Roth, a Jewish-American novelist, but an impostor who is claiming to be him. Roth's impostor causes a furor in Israel by advocating "Diasporism," the polar opposite of Zionism, encouraging Israelis to return home to eastern Europe. In Israel the real Roth attends the trial of a former Nazi, and also observes at a West Bank military court dealing harshly with young Palestinians. Through stark counterpoint between distorted doubles, along with his trademark bawdy humor, Roth comically explores the tensions of his identity as a writer, as a Jew, and as a human being. Operation Shylock
won the PEN/Faulkner Award for 1994.
From Publishers Weekly
Roth's brilliant, absurdist novel, set in Jerusalem during the trial of John Demjanjuk, follows the intersecting paths of two characters who share Roth's name and impersonate one another with dizzying speed.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.