F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay

Submitted By elizabethchllnr
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Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940) was an American author of novels and short stories, whose works are the paradigmatic writings of the Jazz Age[->0], a term he coined himself. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest American writers of the 20th century.[1] Fitzgerald is considered a member of the "Lost Generation[->1]" of the 1920s. He finished four novels: This Side of Paradise[->2], The Beautiful and Damned[->3], The Great Gatsby[->4] (his most famous), and Tender Is the Night[->5]. A fifth, unfinished novel, The Love of the Last Tycoon[->6], was published posthumously. Fitzgerald also wrote many short stories that treat themes of youth and promise along with age and despair.
The Great Gatsby has been the basis for numerous films of the same name, spanning nearly 90 years; 1926[->7], 1949[->8], 1974[->9], 2000[->10], and 2013 adaptations[->11]. In 1958, his life from 1937 to 1940 was dramatized in Beloved Infidel[->12].
Fitzgerald's writing pursuits at Princeton came at the expense of his coursework. He was placed on academic probation, and in 1917 he dropped out of school to join the U.S. Army. Afraid that he might die in World War I with his literary dreams unfulfilled, in the weeks before reporting to duty Fitzgerald hastily wrote a novel called The Romantic Egotist. Although the publisher Charles Scribner's Sons rejected the novel, the reviewer noted its originality and encouraged Fitzgerald to submit more work in the future.[10]HYPERLINK \l "cite_note-Biography.2C_F._Scott_Fitzgerald-13"[13]

Fitzgerald was commissioned a second lieutenant in the infantry and assigned to Camp Sheridan outside of Montgomery[->13], Alabama[->14]. While at a country club, Fitzgerald met and fell in love with Zelda Sayre[->15] (1900–1948), the daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court justice and the "golden girl," in Fitzgerald's terms, of Montgomery youth society. The war ended in 1918, before Fitzgerald was ever deployed, and upon his discharge he moved to New York City hoping to launch a career in advertising lucrative enough to convince Zelda to marry him. He worked for the Barron Collier[->16] advertising agency, living in a single room at 200 Claremont Avenue in the Morningside Heights neighborhood on Manhattan's west side.
Zelda accepted his marriage proposal, but after some time and despite working at an advertising firm and writing short stories, he was unable to convince her that he would be able to support her, leading her to break off the engagement. Fitzgerald returned to his parents' house at 599 Summit Avenue[->17], on Cathedral Hill, in St. Paul, to revise The Romantic Egoist, recast as This Side of Paradise[->18], about the post-WWI flapper[->19] generation. Fitzgerald was so low on finances that he took up a job repairing car roofs.[13]HYPERLINK \l "cite_note-Zelda_.26_F._Scott_Fitzgerald_Chronology-14"[14] The revised novel was accepted by Scribner's[->20] in the fall of 1919, and Zelda and Fitzgerald resumed their engagement. The novel was published on March 26, 1920, and became one of the most popular books of the year. Fitzgerald and Zelda were married in New York's St. Patrick's Cathedral[->21]. Their daughter (only child), Frances Scott "Scottie" Fitzgerald[->22], was born on October 26, 1921.

Paris in the 1920s proved the most influential decade of Fitzgerald's development. Fitzgerald made several excursions to Europe, mostly Paris and the French Riviera[->23], and became friends with many members of the American expatriate community in Paris, notably Ernest Hemingway[->24]. Fitzgerald's friendship with Hemingway was quite vigorous, as many of Fitzgerald's relationships would prove to be. Hemingway did not get on well with Zelda. In addition to describing her as "insane" he claimed that she "encouraged her husband to drink so as to distract Fitzgerald from his work on his novel,"[15]HYPERLINK \l "cite_note-canterbury-16"[16] the other work being the short stories he