Dissertation > Excellent graduate degree dissertation topics show

A Perspective of Philip Roth’s Negative Presentation of Jews in Portnoy’s Complaint, in Contrast with Shakespeare’s Shylock

Author: LiuANa
Tutor: DuChangZhong
School: Fujian Normal University
Course: Comparative Literature and World Literature
Keywords: Philip Roth Portnoy Sophie Portnoy Shakespeare Shylock
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2006
Downloads: 456
Quote: 0
Read: Download Dissertation


Philip Roth has been a writer of great controversy for his revolt against Jewish tradition revealed in his works. The publication of his Portnoy’s Complaint in 1969 turned out at once a hit as well as a scandal. With his treatment in Portnoy’s Complaint of the domineering mother and the transgressive son, he has been accused of a self-hater and anti-Semitic. Some critics even argued that his negative presentation of the mother, Sophie Portnoy, would become a new anti-Semitic stereotype and arouse another wave of anti-Semitism in the US society. Indeed they classified Roth with those Christian authors who embodied anti-Semitism on the Jew images they constructed.Of the various anti-Semitic stereotypes set by Christian authors, Shakespeare’s Shylock in The Merchant of Venice has been by far the most vivid and memorable. Shylock is a product of the Elizabethan age. He is presented as the "other" at the hands of the Christian author and functions as an anti-Semitic stereotype due to Jews’ alien "other" position in the Elizabethan society. He is constructed from the Christian point of view and made the "other" to serve to establish the English protestant hegemony in Elizabethan England. While also negatively presenting Jewishness and Jews in Portnoy’s Complaint, Roth writes from the minority discourse point of view. His frustration with his subcultural position as a Jew in American society is, in many ways, the irritant that produces the fiction. Here he transshipped his personal sense of persecution he suffered as a pariah figure to the defiant destinies of the protagonist and expressed his wish to cross from a subculture into the mainstream. His negative treatment of Jewishness and Jews is his displaced attack on the mainstream world which threw his Jewish people in a predicament so much that that they were distorted and "castrated".Therefore, the function of Jewishness and Jews at the hands of the Jewish writer andthe Christian writer can’t overlap. Through offering a perspective of the negative presentation of Jewishness and Jews by the American-Jewish writer and arguing for the different functions of Jewishness and Jew images in the Christian mainstream discourse and the minority discourse, this paper aims to, on the one hand, refute some critics’

Related Dissertations

  1. On Liang Shiqiu’s Translation from the Perspective of Polysystem Theory,H059
  2. Analysis on Characters and Images in King Lear,I561
  3. Motif of Tragedy in the Human Stain,I712.074
  4. A Study on the Influences of Shakespeare on Feiming,I207.42
  5. A Symbolic Interpretation of American Pastoral,I712
  6. An Ecocritical Study of Shakespeare’s Tragedies,I561
  7. Death in the Four Major Tragedies of William Shakespeare,I561
  8. The Epic of the "Other"-A Post-Colonial Reading of the Merchant of Venice,I561.073
  9. Of the Dramatic Similarities in Shakespeare’s Four Great Tragedies,I561.073
  10. On "American Identity" in Philip Roth’s "American Trilogy",I712
  11. Shakespeare’s Comedies of Manners: the Perplexity of Family Evolution and Construction,I561
  12. Roth’s Unconscious Patriarchal Biases in the Human Stain,I712
  13. Identity Crisis and Female Representation: The Reading of Main Characters in Philip Roth’s the Human Stain,I712.074
  14. Cultural Studies of Zhu Shenghao’s Translation of Shakespeare’s Plays,I046
  15. A Corpus-based Study of the Representation of Interpersonal Meaning of Modality in the Chinese Versions of Shakespeare’s Plays,I046
  16. Loss and Return: A Cultural Interpretation of the Jewish Identity in the Counterlife,I712.074
  17. The Spiritual Vagrants in the Wilderness of Identity,H315.9
  18. Analysis on Time Metaphors in Shakespear’s Works with Conceptual Metaphor Theory,I561
  19. The Comparison of Love Lyrics in Shi Jing and Shakespeare’s Sonnet,I106.2
  20. Shakespeare’s Poetics Seen from His Sonnets,I561.072
  21. Prospero, the Orientalist in the Tempest,I561.073

CLC: >
© 2012 www.DissertationTopic.Net  Mobile