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The Ice Palace.

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Fasha Lennon

Professor Canning

English B1B

7  March  2019

                                                The Ice Palace

         F. Scott Fitzgerald was born on September 24th, 1896.  Francis Scott was named after a distant cousin, who wrote the poem lyrics to the national anthem. In 1913 Fitzgerald graduated boarding school in New Jersey and attended Princeton University to write short stories and journal articles. After attending the university for 4 years he got placed on academic probation and dropped out of college to join the army. Couple of years later he got promoted to second lieutenant. In the Compact Bedford Introduction to literature, Michael Meyer writes of Fitzgerald’s knowledge and his historical record.  Fitzgerald has written many books over the course of his life, for an example, The Great Gatsby, Tender is the night, Winter Dreams, and the Ice Palace. The main purpose of this critical thinking paper, based on the reading of the Ice Palace, is to distinguish the differences between the gold colors in part I, what Sally Carrol sees in the library at Harry’s home in Part III and the historical context that was used throughout the story.

         The difference between the gold colors in part I and what Sally Carrol sees in the library at Harry’s home in part III can be distinguished by describing the cultural and social differences between the north and the south during the 1920’s.  In the first paragraph of part I the author wrote this.

              The sunlight dripped over the house like golden paint over an art jar, and the freckling shadows here and there only intensified the rigor of the bath of light. The Butterworth and Larkin houses flanking were entrenched behind great stodgy trees; only the Happer house took the full sun, and all day long faced the dusty road-street with a tolerant kindly patience. This was the city of Tarleton, Georgia, September afternoon (164).

The author uses the gold colors in both scenes to describe the setting and give the readers an understanding of the cultural and social aspect of the south. “It was a large room with a Madonna over the fireplace and rows upon rows of books in covers of light gold and dark gold and shiny red” (170). This is what Fitzgerald wrote of what Sally Carrol saw in the library at Harry’s home.  Both scenes in part I and part III, describes the same colors but in different settings. The author describes the people and the setting of the south to be warm bright colors but with a touch of cold; whereas the north is described as dark, old, sophisticated and expensive. The Bellamy library was “simply a room with a lot of fairly expensive things in it that all looked about fifteen years old (para.132).” Sally Carrol is used to medical-books, “oil paintings of her three great-uncles” and an “old couch that had been mended up for forty-five years and was still luxurious.” It is clearly a sensitive point for Harry, as he crudely advises her against making “unfortunate” comments about family histories, as he lives in “a three-generation town.”

Throughout the story, Fitzgerald uses historical context to develop the main theme of the story. Researching scholarly sources, it allows me to understand the historical background of the Ice Palace. The Ice palace represents cultural memory as constructed through memorials and monuments, such as the south cemetery and the North’s Ice Palace. According to “David W. Ulrich’s “Memorials and Monuments: Historical Method and the (Re)construction of Memory in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s ‘The Ice Palace”, said that Fitzgerald text examines how culture combines interpretation of grand- scale historical events, such as the Civil and Great war. I believe that he mentions the wars because his family were affected after the fact. The Civil war took place during 1861-1865 and the Great war took place during the 1914- 1918, during this time Fitzgerald parents were alive. Not only were Fitzgerald parents alive during this occasion, but the ice palace was published two years after the Great War.

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