90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science

Why We Still Read ‘The Great Gatsby’

Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan and Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in a scene from "The Great Gatsby." (AP/Warner Bros. Pictures)

Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan and Leonardo DiCaprio as Jay Gatsby in a scene from “The Great Gatsby.” (AP/Warner Bros. Pictures)

This week the film “The Great Gatsby” opens in theaters around the country. It’s the sixth film adaptation of the 1925 F. Scott Fitzgerald classic.  The book has also been adapted for the stage at least twice and it has inspired an opera.

Here and Now literary critic Steve Almond re-reads the book every summer, and he says it continues to resonate today because readers can identify with its themes.

“We all have, or wish to have, outsized dreams, and it is about the aspirational nature of Americans,” Almond said.

Almond says “The Great Gatsby” touches on our past and present love-hate relationship with wealth and privilege.

“We are stuck in this simultaneous feeling of wanting to be at Gatsby’s party and be amidst all that and feel that power and juice and at the same time, knowing deep down that it’s utterly corrupt and empty,” Almond said.

Guest:

  • Steve Almond, Here and Now literary critic and author of “God Bless America”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

November 20 3 Comments

The Man Behind ‘Mockingjay’

Francis Lawrence describes the rewards and challenges of bringing "The Hunger Games" books to the screen.

November 20 Comment

Iraq War Vet Wins National Book Award For Fiction

The judges described the short stories in Phil Klay's collection "Redeployment" as brutal, piercing and sometimes darkly funny.

November 19 11 Comments

New Film Revisits The Jerry Sandusky Sex Abuse Case

The Penn State assistant football coach will likely spend the rest of his life in prison, but that's not the end of the story.

November 19 222 Comments

Without Slavery, Would The U.S. Be The Leading Economic Power?

Edward Baptist argues in his new book that slavery was integral to establishing the America as a world economic power.