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The Great Gatsby: as Hollywood never imagined it

May 9, 2013

After much anticipation Hollywood finally releases its version of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby.

Was Gatsby a crook? Or was he a victim of a crooked game, the American Dream as a broken promise?

In this program originally aired on CBC radio last August, Sarah Churchwell of the University of East Anglia, a professor of American literature and author of Careless People, interprets Fitzgerald as saying the American Dream is a lie.

But listen also for my reading of a few passages to appreciate, tongue-in-cheek, why the underlying economics suggest that The Great Gatsby is indeed a novel for our times.

If you want the movie version, and a detailed discussion of The Great Gatsby Curve, here is a lecture I had the honour to give earlier this year at the University of Lethbridge on the invitation of the Prentice Institute and its Director Susan McDaniel.

I have to admit, however, the Hollywood version looks somewhat more exciting!

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4 Comments
  1. Larry Gemmel permalink

    Thanks, Miles. By the way, your work on The Great Gatsby Curve was mentioned several times last evening in the Macdonald-Laurier Institute’s great debate on whether wealth has too much power in Canada. The audience was pretty firmly in agreement with Armine Yalnizyan and unswayed by Bill Watson’s arguments.

    ***** Larry Gemmel 451 chemin Sauvé Val-des-Monts QC J8N 5A6 Bus 819-671-0207 Res 819-671-0210

    _____

    • Thanks Larry. It sounds like it must have been a very interesting talk. Do you know if they put these up on the web?

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Income Inequality (29): The “Get Off the Couch” Solution | P.a.p.-Blog // Human Rights Etc.
  2. How The Great Gatsby Curve got its name | Economics for public policy

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