Chris Marker wrote in the introduction to his 1997 multimedia CD-Rom Immemory, “I claim for the image the humility and powers of a madeleine.” In that CD-Rom and in many of his other creative endeavors, Marker continued the process of memory’s cartography. He embraced a multitude of genres as mapmaking tools, the span of his work communicating the dependence of the image to its memory. He cobbled together the realities of disparate cultures, mending the breaches in time through preservation of minutia and banality.
A film robs you of imagining the world of a novel as you want to, while a novel cannot as accurately capture the televisual world we now live in. Part of Gatsby’s appeal is its depiction of a time when the American dream was a promising ideal, when the U.S. was not, as Horace from Sam Lipsyte’s The Ask (2010) puts it, a “fat, demented pimp.” The Great Gatsby was written when the U.S. was on the upswing, and now that the nation is in decline, it makes sense that there will be nostalgia for the ‘good-old days’.