Joseph Roth on a train platform in France, 1926

  1. Date/Time

  2. Location

    Center for Jewish History

    15 W. 16th St.
    New York, NY 10011


  3. Admission

    Members: $10
    Non-members: $15
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Read “The Tortured Soul of Joseph Roth” by Gary Shapiro in the Forward

Newly recognized as one of the 20th century’s great writers, Joseph Roth wrote beautifully original prose that is still reaching ever wider audiences as new translations of his works appear, even 73 years after the author’s death.

In January 2012, W.W. Norton will offer a new window on Roth’s life when it publishes poet Michael Hofmann’s new translations of Roth’s letters, many of which are preserved in Roth’s literary estate in LBI archives.

To mark the publication of this landmark biographical work, W.W. Norton and LBI present a panel discussion of Roth’s literary legacy moderated by W.W. Norton executive editor Robert Weil and featuring New Yorker fiction editor Willing Davidson, the author and record producer Anthony Heilbut, and author Fran Lebowitz.

Read excerpts of Roth’s Letters published in the New Yorker’s “Culture Desk” blog.

Joseph Roth: A Life in Letters (Michael Hoffman ed.) W.W. Norton, January 2012

About Joseph Roth: A Life in Letters: “Who would have thought that seventy-three years after Joseph Roth’s lonely death in Paris, new editions of his translations would be appearing regularly? Roth, a transcendent novelist who also produced some of the most breathtakingly lyrical journalism ever written, is now being discovered by a new generation. Nine years in the making, this life through letters provides us with our most extensive portrait of Roth’s calamitous life-his father’s madness, his wife’s schizophrenia, his parade of mistresses (each more exotic than the next), and his classic westward journey from a virtual Hapsburg shtetl to Vienna, Berlin, Frankfurt, and finally Paris. Containing 457 newly translated letters, along with eloquent introductions that richly frame Roth’s life, this book brilliantly evokes the crumbling specters of the Weimar Republic and 1930s France. Displaying Roth’s ceaselessly inventive powers, it finally charts his descent into despair at a time when ‘the word had died, [and] men bark like dogs.’ ” (from W.W. Norton)

LBI holds a wide range of digital archival materials related to Joseph Roth.