It is 1998, the year in which America is whipped into a frenzy of prurience by th impeachment of a president, and in a small New England town, an aging classics professor, Coleman Silk, is forced to retire when his colleagues decree that he is a racist. The charge is a lie, but the real truth about Silk would have astonished his most virulent accuser.Coleman Silk has a secret. But it's not the secret of his affair, at seventy-one, with Faunia Farley, a woman half his age with a savagely wrecked past -- a part-time farmhand and a janitor at the college where, until recently, he was the powerful dean of faculty. And it's not the secret of Coleman's alleged racism, which provoked the college witch-hunt that cost him his job and, to his mind, killed his wife. Nor is it the secret of misogyny, despite the best efforts of his ambitious young colleague, Professor Delphine Roux, to expose him as a fiend.Coleman's secret has been kept for fifty years: from his wife, his four children, his colleagues, and his friends, including the writer Nathan Zuckerman, who sets out to understand how this eminent, upright man, esteemed as an educator fRoth, Philip is the author of 'Human Stain' with ISBN 9780618065981 and ISBN 0618065989.