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The Crack-Up (1945)

by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edmund Wilson (Editor)

Other authors: John Peale Bishop (Contributor), John Dos Passos (Contributor), T.S. Eliot (Contributor), Paul Rosenfeld (Contributor), Gertrude Stein (Contributor)3 more, Glenway Wescott (Contributor), Edith Wharton (Contributor), Thomas Wolfe (Contributor)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
843720,230 (3.85)15
Compiled and published after Fitzgerald's death by his friend, the prominent critic and editor Edmund Wilson,The Crack-Up is a collection of writings that chronicle the author's state of mind and personal perspective on events, fellow writers and public figures of the 1920s and 1930s. In addition to articles and essays such as the celebrated title piece, this volume includes a selection of Fitzgerald's notebooks, which - as well as being a repository of anecdotes and witty lines - provide a fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpse into the novelist's creative process, with passages that would be reworked intohis fiction. An entertaining and eclectic miscellany that sheds light on the author and his times,The Crack-Up is an invaluable companion to such well-known works asThe Great Gatsby andTender Is the Night.… (more)
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» See also 15 mentions

English (5)  French (2)  All languages (7)
Showing 5 of 5
5698. The Crack-Up, by F. Scott Fitzgerald (read 7 Jul 2020) This book's editor was Edmund Wilson and the book was published by New Directions. There is a lot of uninteresting stuff in the book, including snippets of prose Fitzgerald collected or wrote with the idea of using such in his writing. Fitzgerald died at 44 in 1940 and became much more celebrated after he died,.
. ( )
  Schmerguls | Aug 18, 2020 |
After all, didn't Gilles Deleuze use The Crack Up essay, through the perspective of Melanie Klein, to substantiate his interpretation of Sigmund Freud's "death drive" in his 1969 book The Logic of Sense?
  onesmallhole | Jun 12, 2016 |
As a fan of Fitzgerald, I found this book a fascinating addition to the cannon of his published works. The essays which provide the title of the work (the "Crack-Up" pieces) provide reason enough to read it. However, there are also some interesting gems of unpublished and uncollected work that make up the rest of this book.

My favorite piece documents all of the hotels that Scott and Zelda stayed in during the boom years and into the early depression. His notes on the beauty and variety of his surroundings are enjoyable for the striking details he sets down.

All in all, this book is great if you already love Fitzgerald, although it might not be an ideal place to start reading his work. ( )
  Arthur-Krumins | Sep 21, 2014 |
Elegiac essays for a world-class talent who never was. The Crack Up were a series of essays and private letters that Scott Fitzgerald published in Esquire magazine to inform the entire world that his creative powers were spent, that he had nothing left to give, and that he was no longer an author. The essays were the object of much criticism, controversy, with the embarrassment and anger of all his friends. One could phantom why Fitzgerald wanted to do this cathartic self-shaming in public through one of the biggest magazines in the world. Depression is a good reason. But as with Yukio Mishima's essays, e.g. "Sun and Steel," I can see an inescapable streak of narcissism all over the microscope.

The Crack Up is very much a niche work that Edmund Wilson put together to rehabilitate Fitzgerald's reputation. For the average reader, there's nothing for them here. It's not a novel and the essays constitute only a fraction of the whole work. In sum, it isn't great, but it's not awful; it's okay, but yet it's still boring.

As somebody who sometimes likes to write, but who doesn't dare call himself a writer, along with writers and historians, there is a lot of raw information in this book about the thought processes of Scott Fitzgerald. Aborted novel and story titles. Orphaned scenes. General notes and observations. Finally, the praise and encouragement Fitzgerald received from his author friends. After all, didn't Gilles Deleuze use The Crack Up essay, through the perspective of Melanie Klein, to substantiate his interpretation of Sigmund Freud's "death drive" in his 1969 book The Logic of Sense? The contents of The Crack Up are all things that a writer or a historian or even a philosopher will find educative and inspiring.
1 vote GYKM | Aug 19, 2012 |
A distillation of F. Scott's best prose, which leaves only the most dreamy descriptions of pretty selfish girls who will break your heart and leave you a shell of your former self. ( )
  DameMuriel | Jan 26, 2008 |
Showing 5 of 5
". . . a collection of Fitzgerald's unpublished sketches, notebooks, letters and doggerel . . . For all their inanities and juvenile posturings, for all their borrowed melancholy and half-formed wisdom, these notes are a blurred but fascinating blueprint of the development -- and the breakdown -- of a major literary talent."
added by GYKM | editNew York Times, William Du Bois (Jul 23, 1945)
 

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
F. Scott Fitzgeraldprimary authorall editionscalculated
Wilson, EdmundEditormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Bishop, John PealeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dos Passos, JohnContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Eliot, T.S.Contributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Rosenfeld, PaulContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stein, GertrudeContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wescott, GlenwayContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wharton, EdithContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wolfe, ThomasContributorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Antolín Rato, MarianoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Aury, DominiqueTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Grenier, RogerPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Laughlin, JamesEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mayoux, SuzanneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sollers, PhilippePostfacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Compiled and published after Fitzgerald's death by his friend, the prominent critic and editor Edmund Wilson,The Crack-Up is a collection of writings that chronicle the author's state of mind and personal perspective on events, fellow writers and public figures of the 1920s and 1930s. In addition to articles and essays such as the celebrated title piece, this volume includes a selection of Fitzgerald's notebooks, which - as well as being a repository of anecdotes and witty lines - provide a fascinating behind-the-scenes glimpse into the novelist's creative process, with passages that would be reworked intohis fiction. An entertaining and eclectic miscellany that sheds light on the author and his times,The Crack-Up is an invaluable companion to such well-known works asThe Great Gatsby andTender Is the Night.

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Legacy Library: F. Scott Fitzgerald

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