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My Life as a Man My Life as a Man by Philip Roth
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My Life as a Man Quotes (showing 1-5 of 5)
“He is not simply looking into the mirror because he is transfixed by what he sees. Rather, the artist’s success depends as much as anything on his powers of detachment, on de-narcissizing himself… Freud… studied his own dreams not because he was a “narcissist,” but because he was a student of dreams. And whose were at once the least and most accessible of dreams, if not his own?”
Philip Roth, My Life as a Man
“I would browse for half an hour or so in the secondhand bookstores in the neighborhood. Owning my own 'library' was my only materialistic ambition; in fact, trying to decide which two of these thousands of books to buy that week, I would frequently get so excited that by the time the purchase was accomplished I had to make use of the bookseller's toilet facilities. I don't believe that either microbe or laxative has ever affected me so strongly as the discovery that I was all at once the owner of a slightly soiled copy of Empson's Seven Types of Ambiguity in the original English edition.”
Philip Roth, My Life as a Man
“As far as I can see there is no conquering or exorcising the past with words - words born either of imagination or forthrightness.”
Philip Roth, My Life as a Man
“I think I should learn to get along better with people," he explained to Miss Benson one day, when she came upon him in the corridor of the literature building and asked what he was doing wearing a fraternity pledge pin (wearing it on the chest of the new V-neck pullover in which his mother said he looked so collegiate). Miss Benson's response to his proposed scheme for self-improvement was at once so profound and so simply put that Zuckerman went around for days repeating the simple interrogative sentence to himself; like Of Times and the River, it verified something he had known in his bones all along, but in which he could not placed his faith until it had been articulated by someone of indisputable moral prestige and purity : "Why," Caroline Benson asked the seventeen-year-old boy, "should you want to learn a thing like that?”
Philip Roth, My Life as a Man
“Though frankly… Tarnapol, as he is called, is beginning to seem as imaginary as my Zuckermans anyway, or at least as detached from the memoir-ist – his revelations coming to seem like still another “useful fiction,” and not because I am telling lies. I am trying to keep to the facts. Maybe all I’m saying is that words, being words, only approximate the real thing, and so no matter how close I come, I only come close.”
Philip Roth, My Life as a Man

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