Death Becomes Him

Everyman

Philip Roth

Houghton Mifflin, $24, 182 pp.

The fifteenth-century morality play Everyman tells of a man confronted by death, deserted by friends, family, wealth, strength, beauty, his wits-finally only knowledge and good deeds accompany him to the end, after he has received the last sacraments. This is “a pilgrimage he must take which cannot be escaped.” It is a grim and rather predictable tale, but the idea that it is true for all of us is at once obvious and scary; we want to...

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About the Author

John Garvey is an Orthodox priest and columnist for Commonweal. His most recent book is Seeds of the Word: Orthodox Thinking on Other Religions.