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The Greatest Gatsby Essay

3290 words - 14 pages

The 1920’s was an era of new trends, new technology, and new money. People were getting rich quick through backdoor deals and the stock market. Being famous, or wealthy symbolized the great American Dream. Prohibition was in “full force” and people were spending their riches on anything to make them happy. It was also a time of great hope, and a false sense of reality. For Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, this was very much the case. Once a poor man, he put all of his effort in creating a new identity for himself. Gatsby was the definition of a self-made man. He got his money through illegal dealings with bootlegging. Throughout this time he never forgot his first true ...view middle of the document...

After years apart, Daisy and Gatsby are reunited, igniting Gatsby’s hope for love, and blinding the truth of what is actually occurring between them, and resulting in his misfortune. Nick Carraway, Daisy’s cousin, initially brought the two together through tea time at his house. The meeting was highly uncomfortable, but eventually it seemed as if they picked up where they left off. Rekindling their once true love was exciting and wrong, but also forced as a way for Daisy to spite her husband. They spent many days together, and Gatsby’s life finally had what was so obviously missing. Jay invited both Tom and Daisy to one of his lavish parties. People showed up from all over, mostly those of new money who wished to party, and be merry. Daisy and Tom didn’t fit in with these type of people, therefore they didn’t have a good time. Daisy wanted to enjoy it. She knew fitting in with these type of people would mean she could fit into Gatsby’s life. Gatsby felt the distance between him, “I feel far away from her. [...] It’s hard to make her understand”(116). Jay Gatsby is so desperately working to get her to accept him, and his lifestyle, so that she will fit perfectly into his dream. The clear contrast between new and old money would separate them forever. Nick Carraway explains Gatsby’s feelings after the party, “He wanted nothing less of Daisy than that she should go to Tom and say: “I never loved you.” After she had obliterated three years of marriage with that sentence they could decide upon the more practical measures to be taken. One of them was that, after she was free, they were to go back to Louisville and be married from her house- just as if it were five years ago”(116). Gatsby only wants romance in his life, and it will be secured once Daisy expresses her devotion to him, and only him. He blindly hopes that they can go back to five years prior to a time when they were together. This is obviously unrealistic because too much has changed in the years they've been apart. Daisy not only has Tom, but also a daughter. A husband, and a child aren’t people that can just be erased from ones life, which Gatsby doesn’t want to understand. This reveals Fitzgerald’s American Dream as tainted because of it’s disregard for reality. Despite all the riches Gatsby has, his blind optimism for love clouds all the other good in his life. Tragedy is inevitable when the American Dream can not be reached, or the Dream has been lost sight of. Gatsby is used by Fitzgerald to represent the tainted American Dream, creating tragedy.
As the novel progresses Gatsby wants to believe in the security of Daisy’s love because it is his Dream, but by brushing aside reality, tragedy is unavoidable. Tom, Daisy, Nick, and Jordan decide to go into the city together. Daisy and Gatsby in one car, the rest of the group in another. They end up at the Plaza hotel in a suite. Once Tom starts to pick up the fact that something may be going on between Gatsby and Daisy, the two men...

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