First published in 1925, The Great Gatsby has never lost its allure. Last year "Gatz", a six-and-a-half-hour stage adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel, was a sell-out hit at New York's Public Theatre. Everyone is now buzzing about Baz Luhrmann's screen remake of "Gatsby", now being filmed in Australia with Leonardo di Caprio in the title role that was once Robert Redford's [nell'immagine]. A musical adaptation of the novel is set to premiere on September 30th at the New York Musical Theatre Festival in Manhattan. Professor friends of mine tell me that no American work of literature excites their students so much as Fitzgerald’s rueful romantic taxonomy of American dreams and fantasies.
A romantic outsider, Gatsby is both admired and mistrusted. As Nick Carroway - Gatsby's tenant, new friend and the novel's narrator - tells us, rumours depict Gatsby as related to Kaiser Wilhelm, a German spy during the first world war, a bootlegger and a murderer. Outsiders like Gatsby are quintessential figures of American democracy, a system designed to welcome outsiders by elevating individual will over group affiliation. They can redeem, but they can also unsettle. Gatsby had to escape his humble origins in order to conquer society, yet in remaking his life he generated an aura of mysterious menace. Everyone attended his parties. Hardly anyone came to his funeral.
Un bell'articolo di Lee Siegel sull'Economist.