Goodbye, Columbus : And Five Short Stories


Roth wrote in the preface to the book's 30th anniversary edition, "With clarity and with crudeness, and a great deal of exuberance, the embryonic writer who was me wrote these stories in his early 20's, while he was a graduate student at the University of Chicago, a soldier stationed in New Jersey and Washington, and a novice English instructor back at Chicago following his Army discharge...In the beginning it amazed him that any literate audience could seriously be interested in his story of tribal secrets, in what he knew, as a child of his neighborhood, about the rites and taboos of his clan—about their aversions, their aspirations, their fears of deviance and defection, their embarrassments and ideas of success."[6]

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