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The Idea of American Dream in “The Great Gatsby” Essay

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❶Instead, she stays with Tom Buchanan, despite her feelings for Gatsby. However, with a closer look at this novel, one can discern a number of social issues and problems such as inconsistency of the American dream, the destructive power of money and the futility of the upper class.

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Symbolism and the American Dream in The Great Gatsby


Fitzgerald shows how this dream is full of materialism, how materialism influencing the lives of people makes it hard for them so see the reality objectively. So many things have been said about the American Dream; so many people have struggled against themselves to prove that it does not only exist but can also be achieved.

So many people worked hard and devoted their lives to this dream. Do we really and profoundly feel what it means, or do we keep following the stereotypes that we have created in our very own minds.

To make a long story short — What is an American Dream? Their existance seems to be a theatre performance, where the actors are obviously overacting. He is a man that gets whatever he wants and gets it primarily by the means of money. Therefore we can assume, that psychologically he is not ready to take things for what they are. We suppose that it is the reason for his idealization of love that later on lead to the collapse of his dream, the collapse of the American dream.

I was going to wear it to- night, but it was too big in the bust and had to be altered. It was gas blue with lavender beads. Two hundred and sixty-five dollars. Fitzerald shows how Gatsby almost fulfills the dream having all of its requirements: Knowing this, one can see that no matter how hard Gatsby tries to live his fantasy, he will never be able to achieve it. Through close examination of the green light, one may learn that the force that empowers Gatsby to follow his lifelong aspiration is that of the American Dream.

Fitzgerald uses the green light as a symbol of hope, money, and jealousy. Gatsby looks up to the American dream and follows it so he can be the picture perfect man that every girl desires. Gatsby cares a lot about how people see him, and his appearance towards others. He wants everything to look perfect for Daisy, as he wants Daisy to view him as a perfect man.

I suspected he meant my grass. Gatsby becomes corrupted because his main goal is to have Daisy. He needs to have an enormous mansion so he could feel confident enough to try and get Daisy. Gatsby was blinded by the American dream and as a result of this, cause destruction of Gatsby himself. It was evident that this dream only truly caused corruption and destruction. The desire for something sometimes causes people to be someone they are not and this usually does not result in a positive outcome.

Most characters in the novel The Great Gatsby all wanted money, wealth and happiness and would do anything in their power to get this. Myrtle, Gatsby and Daisy have all been corrupted and destroyed by the dream and it was clear to be true.

Money cannot buy you happiness which is something that the three characters in the novel The Great Gatsby truly did not realize. WOW, this is amazing. Thank you so much. You saved my life, and a lot of work and time for me. The Pursuit of the American Dream. Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team https: Hello Can I please get the authors name who wrote this and the date of when they wrote it, Thank you. Your parenthetical references are incorrect and but the key points were helpful.

Perhaps, the most obvious and clear explanation to Gatsby staring at the green light, dreaming of Daisy is the one of his longing for love and making plans for the future. Light, not necessarily green one, but any light, in general, can be considered to have a special meaning in the novel.

For instance, Fitzgerald describes a number of colors in clothes and household articles that are to portray the characters according to the symbolic role they play in the narration. Daisy and Jordan, for example, are often depicted in white clothes, which might seem as a symbol of innocence and purity. Nevertheless, neither Daisy, nor Jordan, are seen as chaste and blameless characters in the novel.

Thus, it is possible to suppose that in this novel, white only seems to symbolize chastity, while in fact, it shows false purity and hypocrisy. The bleak grey hues of the valley of ashes symbolically reflect the transition between the West Egg and the East Egg, each of them symbolizing certain notions as well.

West Egg and East Egg both stand for money; East Egg is the place for the rich American aristocracy, while West Egg is the domain of the ones who gained the money during their lives, not inherited them.

Thus, the valley of ashes shows something in between, something that belongs neither to this world, nor to that. Doubtless, it is associated with the middle class, with the average population, leading a dull and uninteresting life, left out of the entertainments and sparkling luxury of the Jazz Era. Grey is the color of mediocrity, and so, by depicting the valley where common people live and toil in grey colors, Fitzgerald emphasizes the idea of a contemptuous attitude of the upper class to the lower one.

A previously described contrast of the upper and lower classes is not the only one in The Great Gatsby. West Egg and East Egg, situated opposite each other, show the gap between the American aristocracy and newly rich entrepreneurs. However, by drawing a special attention to the similar shape and size of the islands, Fitzgerald seems to emphasize the idea, that in fact, the difference can hardly be seen from a distance. Another important symbol is the symbol of time. Interestingly, while talking to Daisy for the first time in many years, Gatsby is leaning on a defunct clock, which strengthens the idea of the futility of his aspirations and hopes.

The symbol of defunct clock vividly shows the relationship between Daisy and Gatsby. With a number of subtle hints, Fitzgerald reveals how this ideal turned into the everlasting pursuit of materialistic values. Interestingly, money seems to draw people together or tear them apart, depending on circumstances.

A number of tiny details depicting the importance of money and the carelessness in the s society are found in the description of the cocktail parties, expensive evening dresses and jewelry, tremendously ornate houses and new cars. On the one hand, these things are shown as the attributes of an American dream; though, on the other one, Fitzgerald seems to mock the extravagance of the unnecessary things that do not bring real happiness.


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Gatsby was blinded by the American dream and as a result of this, cause destruction of Gatsby himself. He didn’t end up getting what he wanted because the American dream took over who he truly was. The American dream is a powerful dream that was significant in the novel The Great Gatsby by Scott Fitzgerald.

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The Great Gatsby American Dream Essay Words | 7 Pages The Great Gatsby is a novel that illustrates the society in the 's and the associated beliefs, values and dreams of the American population at that time.

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- The American Dream in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a brilliant illustration of life among the new rich during the s, people who had recently amassed a great deal of . Symbolism and the American Dream in The Great Gatsby. The Great Gatsby, a novel written by Francis Scott Fitzgerald in , nowadays is rightly seen as the classics of the American literature. On the face of it, the plot seems to be a usual story of broken hopes and expectations.

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In the Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the mysterious Jay Gatsby, had a similar fantasy dream. But, in theory, Jay Gatsby is just as far as any other person in their progress towards their true American Dream. Jay Gatsby, whose dream included of being with the girl of his dream, and being filthy rich. American Dream Great Gatsby Essay essays The American Dream was the philosophy that brought people to America and to start a new life in a strange, foreign land. Due to this dream, it was believed that America was the land of .