This volume of criticism begins simply enough with essays that provide the reader with cultural, historical, comparative, and critical contexts for understanding Gatsby.
Representing a variety of critical approaches and edited by one of the leading critics on 20th Century American literature, this collection focuses on one of the most widely taught works of American literature. The critical viewpoints presented in the volume cover a wide array of topics from issues of race in the novel to individual character studies. The Editor's Introduction explores the deceptive simplicity of the plot and the complex underpinnings of what makes the novel a true masterpiece.
Several essays consider the cultural and historical contexts of Fitzgerald's work while critical comparisons link the novel to the poetry of Keats and the novels Daisy Miller and Passing. The section of contextual readings is followed by a selection of critical overviews, including Robert Roulston and Helen H. Roulston's consideration of Gatsby as a type of culmination of Fitzgerald's writings and Ruth Prigozy's comprehensive introduction to the Oxford World Classic edition of Gatsby. The critical overviews are followed by a series of critical readings that focus on narrative style, color symbolism, and character analysis among other topics.
Spanning nearly 40 years of critical study, the selection of essays contained in this volume provide the ideal introduction for anyone seeking an introduction to this American classic.
Each essay is 2,500-5,000 words in length, and all essays conclude with a list of "Works Cited," along with endnotes.
Additional resources include:
- Chronology of F. Scott Fitzgerald's life
- Works by F. Scott Fitzgerald
- About the Editor