Defender of the Faith
Defender of the Faith, by Philip Roth, is a short story that exemplifies the nature of
Jewishness that is portrayed through the characters of Sergeant Marx and Sheldon Grossbart.
Throughout the story, there is a recurring theme revolving around the dilemma Sergeant Marx
must face in his decision to act as either a top sergeant, Jewish man, or human being (Paterson,
136). Marx’s internal quarrels, in turn, cause him to constantly
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and, thus, has him come to the self-realization that he is truly a defender of the faith.
Arp, Thomas R. Perrine’s Literature: Structure, Sound, and Sense. New York:
Harcourt Brace College Publishing, 1998 ed.
Lee, Hermione. Philip Roth. New York: Methuen Publishing, 1982.
Paterson, Judith Hillman. Philip Roth: Criticism and Interpretation. New York:
Ungar Publishing, 1981.
Searles, George J. The Fiction of Philip Roth and John Updike. Carbondale:
Southern Illinois University Press, 1985.