Philip Roth Wins Man Booker International Prize

By Jason Boog Comment

Philip Roth has won the £60,000 Man Booker International Prize. Angry about the choice, Booker judge Carmen Callil resigned in protest.

It was the fourth time the bi-annual prize has been awarded–previous winners included Ismail Kadare, Chinua Achebe, and Alice Munro. Roth (pictured via Nancy Crampton) had this comment: “One of the particular pleasures I’ve had as a writer is to have my work read internationally despite all the heartaches of translation that that entails. I hope the prize will bring me to the attention of readers around the world who are not familiar with my work. This is a great honour and I’m delighted to receive it.”

The New Yorker dove into the history behind the angry judge: “Callil is a founder of Virago Press, a British imprint which is the largest publisher devoted to women’s writing in the world. In 1996, it published, Leaving a Doll’s House, a memoir by Roth’s ex-wife Claire Bloom, which told all about their marriage and then some in scathing tones (here’s a review at the Times).”

Over at the Philip Roth Society, a blog post listed the gambling odds for different contenders for the prize. Roth was the 7/2 favorite.

Editor’s note: This post has been updated as the story evolved.