Saul Bellow, American Fiction and the Great Books Tradition
This is a joint seminar organized by Yiddish, Jewish Studies and Komplitt
This is a lecture about the importance of the Great Book Tradition in twentieth-century American fiction, with principal reference to the major Jewish-American novelists of the period – Saul Bellow in particular, but also Philip Roth and Bernard Malamud. The talk involves discussion of the role of ‘Great Books’ or ‘Humanities’ or ‘Western Civilization’ courses in American universities and of the threat such courses faced, continue to face, from attacks on the canon and the claims of multi-culturalism.
Professsor Zachary Leader
Roehampton University (UK), Department of English and Creative Writing
Prof. Leader published the second volume of his Saul Bellow biography in fall 2018 to rave reviews: The Life of Saul Bellow: Love and Strife, 1965-2005, (Knopf), 784pp.
Although born and raised in the United States, prof. Leader has lived in Britain for over forty years. He was educated at Northwestern University, Trinity College, Cambridge, and Harvard University. Before coming to Roehampton University, he taught at Harvard and at Trinity Hall, and Downing Colleges, Cambridge.
He is the recipient of Guggenheim, Leverhulme, British Academy, Society of Authors, Huntington Library, and Whiting Foundation fellowships. In 2007 he was elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He has written or edited eleven books, one of which, The Life of Kingsley Amis, was shortlisted for the Pulitzer Prize. In addition, he is the General Editor of the Oxford History of Life-Writing, a seven-volume series published by Oxford University Press.