Book Talk with Zachary Leader (Author, The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife, 1965-2005) Interviewed by Mark Cohen (Author, Not Bad for Delancey Street: The Rise of Billy Rose)
"This is a superb biography," The New York Times.
Please join us for a discussion of the newly released second and final volume of The Life of Saul Bellow, the monumental biography of the Nobel Prize-winning Jewish-American novelist.
Zachary Leader's Love and Strife, 1965-2005, has been hailed as "top-notch," "compulsively readable," and "the definitive account," which description means this will likely be the last chance for Bellow readers – fans and foes as well as the curious and ambivalent – to publicly gather, learn, and wonder about the writer who more than any other captured American and Jewish-American life in the second half of the 20th century.
There is a lot to wonder about. When this second volume of the biography opens, Bellow, at forty-nine, is at the pinnacle of American letters - rich, famous, critically acclaimed. But he also is increasingly embroiled in controversy over 1960s youth culture, the anti-war and civil rights movements, Israel, anti-Semitism, and Jewish identity. His private life offers no respite, as he regularly marries and divorces, carries on multiple love affairs, juggles relationships with his three sons and, at age 84, fathers a daughter.
Mark Cohen is the author of the new biography, Not Bad for Delancey Street: The Rise of Billy Rose, which was inspired by The Bellarosa Connection, Saul Bellow's fictional account of the mid-20th century producer, songwriter, nightclub and theater owner, syndicated columnist, art collector, tough guy, and Jewish philanthropist who rescued a Jewish refugee from Nazi Europe.
AJHS is home to the papers of great Jewish New York novelists housed in our collections, such as the Abraham Shoenfeld Papers, the Henry Roth Papers, and the Walter Hart Blumenthal Papers – all masterfully narrating themes of immigration, identity, and the American Jewish experience.
Monday, 04 February, 2019
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