Samuel Roth, Infamous Modernist

Samuel Roth, Infamous Modernist

Jay A. Gertzman / Feb 27, 2020

Samuel Roth Infamous Modernist The first deeply researched and sustained biographical treatment of a man who has become recognized as a significant figure in American publishing transatlantic modernism and the development of obsc

  • Title: Samuel Roth, Infamous Modernist
  • Author: Jay A. Gertzman
  • ISBN: 9780813044170
  • Page: 252
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The first deeply researched and sustained biographical treatment of a man who has become recognized as a significant figure in American publishing, transatlantic modernism, and the development of obscenity law Gertzman s wide ranging knowledge of Roth and the startlingly diverse contexts in which he lived and worked makes this a penetrating and unsurpassed portrait not o The first deeply researched and sustained biographical treatment of a man who has become recognized as a significant figure in American publishing, transatlantic modernism, and the development of obscenity law Gertzman s wide ranging knowledge of Roth and the startlingly diverse contexts in which he lived and worked makes this a penetrating and unsurpassed portrait not only of Roth but of the country he inhabited Robert Spoo, coeditor of Ezra and Dorothy Pound Letters in Captivity, 1945 1946 Gertzman is to be commended for braiding together so many underappreciated strands of twentieth century literary, legal, and cultural history Paul K Saint Amour, editor of Modernism and Copyright Speaks very importantly and convincingly about American Jewish identity, censorship, modern publishing, and twentieth century literature But equally important is the story the book tells about an enigma the puzzling, contradictory, and often appealing figure of Samuel Roth, whose torturous and fascinating trail Gertzman chronicles with wit and insight Mary Dearborn, author of The Happiest Man Alive A Biography of Henry Miller Samuel Roth was notorious for being a poet, a pornographer, and a pirate While his own writing reflected the experience of immigrant Jews and he frequently went to prison on obscenity charges, he was mostly known as a bold literary pirate for issuing unauthorized editions of modernist sensations, including Ulysses and Lady Chatterley s Lover In the absence of an international copyright agreement and because works deemed obscene could not be copyrighted, what he did was not illegal But it did violate the protocols of mutual fair dealing between publishers and authors Those publications provoked an unprecedented international protest of writers, publishers, and intellectuals who eventually vilified Roth on two continents Roth was a man with an uncanny ability to recognize good contemporary writing and make it accessible to popular audiences Ultimately, his dedication to the publication of indecent works broke down many of the censorship laws of the time, though he suffered greatly for his efforts His story portrays a man who struggled with the moral quandaries of literary censorship in the mid twentieth century, while trying to reconcile the lucrative act of disseminating provocative works and his own Judaism.

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      Posted by:Jay A. Gertzman
      Published :2019-06-06T04:49:48+00:00

    About "Jay A. Gertzman"

      • Jay A. Gertzman

        Professor emeritus of English at Mansfield University, is author of three books, including Bookleggers and Smuthounds The Trade in Erotica, 1920 1940.


    604 Comments

    1. Samuel Roth, Infamous Modernist is the definitive biography of a colorful, tortured, brilliant publisher who brought Joyce's Ulysses and Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover to America. He made enemies of the Establishment and spent five years in prison for his actions, but Roth ultimately was responsible for changing America's repressive censorship laws. Gertzman, one of the most respected scholars on censorship, pornography and government repression, has written a book that is meticulously resea [...]


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