TitleWave: Philip Roth’s Nemesis

Oct 6, 2010

Polio wasn’t always the petulant paralytic disease that struck fear into the hearts of parents and children that it was during the middle of the 20th century – for years, people would catch a mild case of the disease and develop immunity to it. As sanitation began to improve our exposure and thus resistance to bacteria decreased. It is at this time in our nation’s history that Philip Roth’s latest book, <i>Nemesis</i> takes place. In the book a neighborhood in Newark, New Jersey is stricken with a polio outbreak. Though polio may feel like a disease of the past it isn’t hard to draw parallels between our modern day super bugs such as MRSA and other deadly strains of Staph and how we may soon be changing our daily behavior in an effort to keep the doctor away. From <i>Goodbye, Columbus</i> to <i>Portnoy’s Complaint</i> and now the <i>Nemesis</i> also known as polio – Patt talks with acclaimed author Phillip Roth.

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