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Criticism of The Great Gatsby

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Criticism of The Great Gatsby

“This patient romantic hopefulness against existing conditions symbolizes Gatsby” – Edwin Clark, 1925 for the New York Times

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“The queer charm, colour, wonder and drama of a young and wreckless world”- William Rose Benet, 1925

“Their idiotic pursuit of sensation, their almost incredible stupidity and triviality, their glittering swinishness—these are the things that go into his book.”- H.L Mencken 1925

“Fitzgerald gives us a meditation on some of this country’s most central ideas, themes, yearnings and preoccupations: the quest for a new life, the preoccupation with class, the hunger for riches.

” – Jonathan Yardley for The Washington Post (2007).

“This is a story that, in its telling, resembles real life. We don’t see the justification that the other characters use for their actions. We only see their actions, and Carraway’s interpretation of their actions.” – Jerry Stratton (2006).

‘Nick wants to portray Gatsby as ‘great’ and to ignore or edit anything that might undermine that image.’ ‘The English Review’, Claire Stocks, 2007

‘Even in America, Fitzgerald seems to suggest, society is strictly ordered, and for the elite to retain their exclusive position at the top of the hierarchy, those below them must also remain in their proper place.

’ Claire Stocks, 2007

‘Fantastic proof that chivalry, of a sort, is not dead.’ Life Magazine, 1925

‘Gatsby lives in the world of romantic energies and colors, a world shaped as a conspiracy between himself and the writer who has been creating him.’ ‘Fitzgerald’s ‘Radiant World’’- Thomas Flanagan, 2000

‘The spectral underclass, simultaneously invisible and obtrusive, marginalized and central, wreaks the novel’s horrific climax, emerging as the apocalyptic assassin of that ideologically saturated “ideal” order.’ (That one’s quite intense!) Chris Fitter, 1998

“F. Scott Fitzgerald’s life is a tragic example of both sides of the American Dream – the joys of young love, wealth and success, and the tragedies associated with excess and failure.” PBS biographys F. Scott Fitzgerald and the American Dream

“Life is essentially a cheat and its conditions are those of defeat … the redeeming things are not happiness and pleasure…but the deeper satisfactions that come out of struggle.” F.Scott to his daughter.

‘It is one of those novels that so richly evoke the texture of their time that they become, in the fullness of time, more than literary classics; they become a supplementary or even substitute form of history’. Matthew J. Bruccoli, Introduction to New Essays on The Great Gatsby, (1985)

‘The novel takes on the verbal complexity of the poem, and Fitzgerald skillfully tells a compelling story at the same time as he brilliantly compresses elements involving American history and Western culture’. Richard Lehan, The Text as Construct: Narrative Knots and Narrative Unfolding, (2010)

“Moments of happiness or triumph from the past can neither be recaptured nor repeated, and for that reason seldom can they be forgotten.” – Jeffrey Steinbrink, 1980

“Nick is considered quite reliable, basically honest, and ultimately changed by his contact with Gatsby.” The International Fiction Review, David O’Rourke, Centennial College, 1982

“Nick Carraway is to be respected for his moral concern – East Vs. West, they are opposites but cannot stay rigid, blurred or confused in identity patterns.” Gatsby and the Hole in Time, R. W Stallman, 1955

‘In one sense Gatsby is the apotheosis of his rootless society. His background is cosmopolitan, his past a mystery, his temperament that of an opportunist entirely oblivious to the claims of people of the world outside…. He really believes in himself and his illusions: and this quality of faith… sets him apart from the cynically armoured midgets whom he epitomizes. It makes him bigger than they are, and more vulnerable.’ -A. E. Dyson

‘It is Nick’s own confused responsiveness to his cousin’s sexual power and charm that allows him subsequently to understand Gatsby’s equation of Daisy with all that is most desirable under the heavens – ultimately with the siren song of the American continent. Nick cannot help but be compelled by the buoyant vitality which surrounds her.’ -Joyce A. Rowe

“With sensitive insight and keen psychological observation, Fitzgerald discloses in these people a meanness of spirit, carelessness and absence of loyalties. He cannot hate them, for they are dumb in their insensate selfishness, and only to be pitied […] he writes well, for he writes naturally.” Edwin Clark (1925)

A. E Dyson- “Tom’s restlessness is an arrogant assertiveness seeking to evade in bluster the deep uneasiness of self-knowledge. His hypocrisy and lack of human feeling make him the most unpleasant character in the book, but he is also, when it comes to the point, one of the sanest”

“Life is essentially a cheat and its conditions are those of defeat … the redeeming things are not happiness and pleasure…but the deeper satisfactions that come out of struggle.” F. Scott Fitzgerald

‘ It is one of those novels that so richly evoke the texture of their time’ – Matthew Bruccoli

‘So much of the meaning in Gatsby comes out of imagery, it’s texture and the complexity of it’s motives’ – Harold Bloom

‘ Nick is to be respected for his moral concern’ – R.W.Stallman

‘ It seems to me that no American novel comes closer than Gatsby to suppressing literacy artistry and none tells us more about ourselves’ – Jonathon Yardley.

“It is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s.” – A Cornell – 1925.

“Fantastic proof that chivalry, of a sort, is not dead.” – Life Magazine – May 7, 1925.

“Fitzgerald seems to have had a brilliant understanding of lives that are corrupted by greed and incredibly sad and unfulfilled. The novel is a product of its generation–with one of American literature’s most powerful characters in the figure of Jay Gatsby, who is urbane and world-weary. Gatsby is really nothing more than a man desperate for love.” – James Topham.

“Gatsby is somewhat vague. The reader’s eyes can never quite focus upon him, his outlines are dim” – Thomas Flanagan

“Fitzgerald was an impressionistic realist who evoked, by means of style and tone, the emotions or sensory responses associated with places and events. ” – Matthew J. Bruccoli

‘With sensitive insight and keen psychological observation, Fitzgerald discloses in these people a meanness of spirit, carelessness and absence of loyalties. He cannot hate them, for they are dumb in their insensate selfishness, and only to be pitied’ Edwin Clarke- New York Times.

“It is humour, irony, ribaldry, pathos and loveliness….A curious book, a mystical, glamorous story of today.” Edwin C. Clark, The New York Times

Edwin Clark(1925)- ‘A curious book, a mystical, glamourous story of today.’

David O’Rourke- ‘Nick is considered quite reliable, basically honest, and ultimately changed by his contact with Gatsby.’

“Fitzgerald gives us a meditation on some of this country’s most central ideas, themes, yearnings and preoccupations: the quest for a new life, the preoccupation with class, the hunger for riches.” – Jonathan Yardley for The Washington Post (2007).

“Nick Carraway is to be respected for his moral concern – East Vs. West, they are opposites but cannot stay rigid, blurred or confused in identity patterns.” Gatsby and the Hole in Time, R. W Stallman, 1955

“The Great Gatsby has an undeserved reputation as a lucky book, both in terms of its composition and reception” (The Observer, March 2000, Adam-Mars Jones)

“You’ll find the language weighted and resonant and the imagery quite simply unforgettable, with its poetic elevation of the quotidian to the level of the profoundly philosophical” (The Independent, Alan Glynn, September 2011)

Cite this Criticism of The Great Gatsby

Criticism of The Great Gatsby. (2016, Jul 02). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/criticism-of-the-great-gatsby/

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