The Anatomy Lesson is the third novel in Philip Roth’s Nathan Zuckerman series. The story takes place in 1973 and follows novelist Nathan Zuckerman. The 40-year-old Zuckerman has not published a novel in several years and he is struggling with intractable chronic pain in his neck and shoulders. In addition, his parents have both died in the last few years, he has become divorced for the third time, and he has become estranged from his brother, Henry. To cope with his isolation, he becomes involved in sexual relationships with four different women, but he still struggles desperately with his various personal problems.