The Villages - October 2016 - 5


{ For The

Love

oF LearninG }

Quick Lesson on
'The Great Gatsby'
photo by brandon at Well

Instructor David Harshfield teaches you some lessons
from his class, "F. Scott Fitzgerald and His Alter-Ego,
Gatsby," at The Villages Lifelong Learning College.
"The GreaT GaTsby" sheds LiGhT
on FiTzGeraLd's LiFe.
Many of Fitzgerald's novels primarily are autobiographical,
as there are many parallels to his life. Fitzgerald and
Jay Gatsby, the romantic protagonist in the 1925 novel
"The Great Gatsby," both reportedly drank heavily, were
womanizers and made good money but spent it just as fast.
They hungered to be rich and live the American dream.
Critics speculate that Gatsby was based on Fitzgerald
and Daisy Buchanan was inspired by Zelda Sayre - who
Fitzgerald met at a dance in 1918 and later married.
FiTzGeraLd's success brieFLy Tanked.
Fitzgerald was popular, the playboy of the 1920s and
spokesman of the Jazz Age, but it all came to a crashing halt
when the stockmarket crashed in 1929. During the Great
Depression, nobody wanted to read novels about wealth in
the roaring '20s.
The movies don'T TeLL aLL.
"Gatsby" has been made into a major motion picture
starring Robert Redford (1974), Paul Rudd (2000) and
Leonardo DiCaprio (2013). Someone who hadn't read the
book would be confused by the movie starring DiCaprio,
because it changed the narrator. It focused so much on the
partying that it might've missed the essential conflicts and
characters. The most accurate movie stars Redford.
FiTzGeraLd Found his FormuLa.
Fitzgerald wrote a short story called "Winter Dreams" with
the same basic plot as "Gatsby" - tragically chasing women
and wealth. Many writers, once they find something that
works, go with it. It's the same story, but the characters and
setting change. Many critics say "Gatsby" is his best novel,
but "Tender is the Night" might be just as good.
"GaTsby" conTinues as a sTapLe.
It's a short book and an easy read, so students like it. It's still
a high school requirement across the country. It has a happy
venue to it and it just drips with symbolism.
- compiled by Kathryn deen

about the instructor
David Harshfield teaches eight literature classes about classic
American authors and poets at the learning college. The
Village of Hemingway resident is a retired English teacher
from Flushing, Michigan. He started teaching at the learning
college in 2014. He also collects antique clocks, co-hosts
euchre games and is vice president of the Educators Retired
Club. He still has his "Gatsby" book from high school.
To sign up for Harshfield's classes, call the learning college at
753-3035 or visit thevillageslifelongcollege.com.
MAGAZINE

5


http://www.thevillageslifelongcollege.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Villages - October 2016

Contents
The Villages - October 2016 - Cover1
The Villages - October 2016 - Contents
The Villages - October 2016 - 1
The Villages - October 2016 - 2
The Villages - October 2016 - 3
The Villages - October 2016 - 4
The Villages - October 2016 - 5
The Villages - October 2016 - 6
The Villages - October 2016 - 7
The Villages - October 2016 - 8
The Villages - October 2016 - 9
The Villages - October 2016 - 10
The Villages - October 2016 - 11
The Villages - October 2016 - 12
The Villages - October 2016 - 13
The Villages - October 2016 - 14
The Villages - October 2016 - 15
The Villages - October 2016 - 16
The Villages - October 2016 - 17
The Villages - October 2016 - 18
The Villages - October 2016 - 19
The Villages - October 2016 - 20
The Villages - October 2016 - 21
The Villages - October 2016 - 22
The Villages - October 2016 - 23
The Villages - October 2016 - 24
The Villages - October 2016 - 25
The Villages - October 2016 - 26
The Villages - October 2016 - 27
The Villages - October 2016 - 28
The Villages - October 2016 - 29
The Villages - October 2016 - 30
The Villages - October 2016 - 31
The Villages - October 2016 - 32
The Villages - October 2016 - 33
The Villages - October 2016 - 34
The Villages - October 2016 - 35
The Villages - October 2016 - 36
The Villages - October 2016 - 37
The Villages - October 2016 - 38
The Villages - October 2016 - 39
The Villages - October 2016 - 40
The Villages - October 2016 - 41
The Villages - October 2016 - 42
The Villages - October 2016 - 43
The Villages - October 2016 - 44
The Villages - October 2016 - 45
The Villages - October 2016 - 46
The Villages - October 2016 - 47
The Villages - October 2016 - 48
The Villages - October 2016 - 49
The Villages - October 2016 - 50
The Villages - October 2016 - 51
The Villages - October 2016 - 52
The Villages - October 2016 - 53
The Villages - October 2016 - 54
The Villages - October 2016 - 55
The Villages - October 2016 - 56
The Villages - October 2016 - 57
The Villages - October 2016 - 58
The Villages - October 2016 - 59
The Villages - October 2016 - 60
The Villages - October 2016 - 61
The Villages - October 2016 - 62
The Villages - October 2016 - 63
The Villages - October 2016 - 64
The Villages - October 2016 - 65
The Villages - October 2016 - 66
The Villages - October 2016 - 67
The Villages - October 2016 - 68
The Villages - October 2016 - 69
The Villages - October 2016 - Cover4
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