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The Motif of Betrayal in Philip Roth’s “American Trilogy”

DOI: 10.4236/als.2016.43008, PP. 41-47

Keywords: Philip Roth, “American Trilogy”, Betrayal

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Philip Roth displays numerous cases of betrayal in his “American trilogy”: Seymour’s betrayal to his father; the mutual betrayal between Seymour and his wife; the daughter’s betrayal to Seymour and his wife; Coleman Silk’s betrayal to his mother and his wife; the mutual betrayal between Ira Ringold and Eve Frame; the betrayal of a paramour, friends and former neighbours to Ira Ringold, etc. Meanwhile, Roth reveals the causes and effects of the betrayal in the trilogy. Through the stage of betrayal, Roth shows a clear picture of American social life.


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