Babylon Revisited vs Winter Dreams: Compare & Contrast
Babylon Revisited by F. Scott Fitzgerald was published first in a newspaper, as a telltale of the author’s experiences. In the story, Charlie, a middle-aged man with good looks, has a sister in law and brother in law in Marion and Lincoln; the two have different attitudes towards him with respect to his habits and characteristics. Lincoln is friendly towards Charlie as he enjoys talking to him however Marion keeps her distance and the author makes it clear that she holds feelings of distrust for him. Marion feels Charlie is pushing the important aspects of his life away by spending too much time in bars and pubs; according to her, he should be spending time with his family rather than with strangers in bars. She tries to demean him with her conversation when they talk about the various changes that have cropped up within Paris for Americans.
Lincoln on the other hand is easygoing and maintains a genial attitude towards Charlie; despite knowing that he drinks too much, he still offers him a drink. This assists in depicting the callous lifestyle that both men lived and comprehended for each other. Even after Lincoln and Marion get the custody of Charlie’s daughter, Lincoln displays an affectionate attitude towards Charlie however Marion turns very harsh and refuses to even speak to him. This is because she thinks he is not capable enough of even taking care of his own life, and thus cannot take care of someone else.
- Every individual has a dream that he wants to achieve in order to help him climb a higher rung in the ladder of life – and he thinks that the same can only be achieved with success in his professional life. However, happiness is the main emotion that often ends up sifting away due to a run behind the pointless things in life. Winter Dreams written by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a short story that has won him wide acclaim. The story has numerous episodes in a cluster that were later expounded upon and written about in Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. The theme of the novel is very symbolic; it is based on the dreams of Dexter which he begins to live however for a temporal period only. The word ‘winter’ has been used to signify the ephemerality of the situation. Dexter is associated with affluence and high power after having earned the repute for himself, however with time, money and power show major responsibility in his life which is not able to handle well. This leads him into a trap of juggling with success and happiness which both come to a man at a high cost.
The idea of the story is to help the reader understand the ‘American dream’ which involves achieving success and acceptance within society; however upon achieving the same, Dexter comes to the conclusion that he was much happier before he released this dream of his and that success comes to him at a very high cost. He forgets the meaning of happiness with time and understands that the land on the other side wasn’t greener, but actually infertile altogether.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. Babylon Revisited, and Other Stories. New York: Scribner, 1960. Print.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. Winter Dreams. [Whitefish, MT]: Kessinger, 2007. Print.