Philip Roth has been awarded the 2011 Man Booker International prize.
The biannual prize, given out this year for the fourth time, is worth £60,000.
Mr Roth was honoured over 12 other writers, including Australian-Jewish author David Malouf.
The 78-year-old American novelist, whose body of work includes Portnoy's Complaint and The Plot Against America, saw his 31st book published last year.
Rick Gekoski, one of three judges on the panel, praised Mr Roth for how he "stimulated, provoked and amused an enormous, and still expanding, audience".
Mr Gekoski added: "His imagination has not only recast our idea of Jewish identity, it has also reanimated fiction, and not just American fiction, generally."
Mr Roth was a finalist for the Man Booker International on two previous occasions, but this year marks his first win. He will accept the prize at a ceremony in London on June 28.
The choice of Mr Roth was controversial enough to prompt one of the judges, feminist publisher Carmen Callil, to quit the panel . She said: "He goes on and on about the same subject in almost every book. I don't rate him as a writer at all."