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Portnoy's Complaint

Release Date 12 Jan 1969
Released50 years, 2 months ago
Author Philip Roth
Correction?
Portnoy's Complaint
Portnoy's Complaint
First edition cover of Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth.

About Portnoy's Complaint

Portnoy's Complaint is a 1969 American novel that turned its author Philip Roth into a major celebrity, sparking a storm of controversy over its explicit and candid treatment of sexuality, including detailed depictions of masturbation using various props including a piece of liver. 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." Many of its characteristics (comedic prose; themes of sexual desire and sexual frustration; a self-conscious literariness) went on to become Roth trademarks. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Portnoy's Complaint 52nd on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Time included this novel in its "TIME 100 Best English-language Novels from 1923 to 2005."