Babylon Revisited F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay

Babylon Revisited F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay-23
Fitzgerald's fiction has secured his reputation as one of the most important American writers of the twentieth century.

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Scott Fitzgerald was at the height of his creative powers, these ten lyric tales represent some of the author's finest fiction. He attended Princeton University, joined the United States Army during World War I, and published his first novel, This Side of Paradise, in 1920.

In them, Fitzgerald creates vivid, timeless characters -- a dissatisfied southern belle seeking adventure in the north; the tragic hero of the title story who lost more than money in the stock market; giddy and dissipated young men and women of the interwar period. That same year he married Zelda Sayre and for the next decade the couple lived in New York, Paris, and on the Riviera.

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In his Ledger Fitzgerald notes "a million Americans" in Paris (May 1925, 179).

His view of the Americans in Paris varied with time: In a letter to friend and critic Edmund Wilson in May 1925, Fitzgerald wrote, "I'm filled with disgust for Americans in general after two weeks sight of the ones in Paris" (Life in Letters 110).

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Fitzgerald himself had this to say about his own body of work: "You see, I not only announced the birth of my young illusions in This Side of Paradise but pretty much the death of them in some of my last Post stories like "Babylon Revisited" (Letters 588).

Jeffrey Meyers, the most recent biographer of Fitzgerald, observes further that Fitzgerald's "literary career spanned the Twenties and Thirties, so his personal life--which began to collapse at the same time as Zelda's breakdown, soon after the Wall Street Crash of October 1929--ran precisely parallel to the boom and bust phases between the wars" (192). Scott Fitzgerald put himself into his writings, both literally and figuratively, and this is certainly true for "Babylon Revisited"; very few studies of his life find it possible to ignore the story as being something representative of Fitzgerald or his times.


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