Vintage International

The Dying Animal

Publisher: Vintage
David Kepesh is an eminent cultural critic and star lecturer at a New York college-as well as an articulate propagandist of the sexual revolution. For years he has made a practice of sleeping with adventurous female students while maintaining an aesthete's critical distance. But now that distance has been annihilated.

When he becomes involved with Consuela Castillo, the humblingly beautiful daughter of Cuban exiles, Kepesh finds himself dragged helplessly, bitterly, furiously into the quagmire of sexual jealousy and loss. In chronicling this descent, Philip Roth performs a breathtaking set of variations on the themes of eros and mortality, license and repression, selfishness and sacrifice.

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I knew her eight years ago. She was in my class. I don't teach full-time anymore, strictly speaking don't teach literature at all-for years now just the one class, a big senior seminar in critical writing called Practical Criticism. I attract a lot of female students. For two reasons. Because it's a subject with an...
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READING GUIDE

“A disturbing masterpiece.” —The New York Review of Books

The introduction, discussion questions, suggested reading list, and author biography that follow are designed to enhance your group’s discussion of Philip Roth’s The Dying Animal. We hope they will deepen and...
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PRAISE FOR

“A disturbing masterpiece.”
The New York Review of Books

“Sorrowful, sexy, elegant . . .. A distinguished addition to Roth's increasingly remarkable literary career.”
San Francisco Chronicle

“Roth is a mesmerizing writer, whose very language has the vitality of a living organism.”
Los Angeles Times

“No one can come close to Roth's comic genius and breadth of moral imperative.”
The Boston Globe