AWEJ for Translation & Literary Studies, Volume 5, Number 1. February   2021                                Pp. 279-295

Reading F.S. Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby through Aristotle’s Eyes: Friendship, Gifts, and Commodities

 University Mouloud Mammeri of Tizi Ouzou, Algeria

Sabrina Zerar

University Mouloud Mammeri of Tizi Ouzou, Algeria


This research explores the interlocked notions of friendship, community, gift, and commodity culture in Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. It seeks to demonstrate that Fitzgerald’s ethical vision of friendship, community, the Bad, and the Good are deeply shaped by Aristotle’s works The Nicomachean Ethics, The Politics, and The Metaphysics. The extent to which Aristotle has shaped the form and contents of The Great Gatsby, a novel rightly described as a classic of its genre and how far the contentious aspect of its gendered and orientalized characterization can be traced to Fitzgerald’s dialogic relation with the Greek philosopher are among certain questions that this research addresses. The approach to the issue and the related questions stated above is eclectic. It draws its paradigms, partly from Bakhtin’s dialogical theory, partly from economic and cultural anthropology, and partly from postcolonial, historical theory of the type elaborated by Said and Fanon.

Cite as:

Henna, I. &  Zerar, S.  (2021). Reading F.S. Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby through Aristotle’s Eyes: Friendship, Gifts, and Commodities. Arab World English Journal for Translation & Literary Studies 5 (1) 279-295.
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awejtls/vol5no1.20


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Ibrahim Henna is currently teaching at the University Mouloud Mammeri, Tizi Ouzou, Algeria. He earned an MA degree from the same University, and is now carrying out a Ph.D. research in American literature with a focus on the multiple types of dialogic relations that modern American authors hold with Joseph Conrad.  ORCiD: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8358-3250.

Sabrina Zerar is currently professor of American literature and civilization at the University Mouloud Mammeri, Tizi Ouzou, Algeria. Her research interests include issues of gender, film, and postcolonial studies. As director of the laboratory of foreign languages and cultures, she has conducted research groupings in these research areas. Some of her publications can be accessed at http://labs.ummto.dz/lecle.