The Great Gatsby A Critical Analysis Of The Great Gatsby

2704 words - 11 pages

It is all useless. It is like chasing the wind." (Ecclesiastes 2:26). The "it" in this case, F Scott Fitzgerald's groundbreaking novel The Great Gatsby, refers to the exhaustive efforts Gatsby undertakes in his quest for life: the life he wants to live, the so-called American Dream. The novel is Fitzgerald's vessel of commentary and criticism of the American Dream. As he paints a vivid portrait of the Jazz Age, Fitzgerald defines this Dream, and through Gatsby's downfall, expresses the futility and agony of its pursuit. Through Gatsby's longing for it, he depicts its beauty and irresistible lure in a manner of which the Philosopher himself would be proud.The aspects of the American Dream are ...view middle of the document...

Consequently, I am not ugly, for the effect of my ugliness, its power to repel, is annulled by money... does not my money, therefore, transform all my incapacities into their opposites? (Possnock 204).Gatsby's incapacities, generally of an emotional nature, inhibitions preventing his successful capture of his long-lost love, Daisy, are washed away with the drunkenness provided by the dollar:However glorious might be his future as Jay Gatsby, he was a present a penniless young man without a past, and at any moment the invisible cloak of his uniform might slip from his shoulders... He took what he could get, ravenously and unscrupulously - eventually he took Daisy one still October night (Fitzgerald 141).Once armed with the lucre, however, he is prepared to contribute equally to the relationship, making it truly an equal relation of love.Love represents the other side of the coin of wealth: as opposed to material wealth, it refers instead to emotional wealth. Whatever its plane of existence, love plays a pivotal role in the American Dream, in Gatsby's Dream. Perhaps love is the most valuable of the aspects presented thus far of the Dream; "He hadn't once ceased looking at Daisy, and I think he revalued everything in his house according to the measure of response it drew from her well-loved eyes" (Fitzgerald 88). Such is his love for her; the bootlegging Gatsby values this emotional wealth to the extent that he essentially abandons the material for just a moment, losing himself in the winds of passion stirred up by the swaying of Daisy's dress as she inspects Gatsby's lookout tower for the green light. His emotional wealth is so suddenly multiplied that "none of it [his possessions] was any longer real. Once he nearly toppled down a flight of stairs" (Fitzgerald 88).Sharing the same side of the coin is the need for social acceptance. Gatsby prides himself on his openness; his lavish parties where strangers "came and went without having met Gatsby at all, came for the party with a simplicity of heart that was its own ticket of admission" (Fitzgerald 43), proof of not only his tolerance, but also of his acceptance of those whose drinking make him grow "more correct as the fraternal hilarity increased" (Fitzgerald 51). Gatsby certainly wants the people on his side: from his house labeled a Norman "Hotel de Ville," or City Hall, open to the public, to Lucille's replacement dress from Croirier's, courtesy of Gatsby, no expense is too great in his quest to win others support. Gatsby needs as much popular support as he can get, in the face of such random acts of contempt as "he killed a man once" (Fitzgerald 45) to "he was a German spy during the war" (Fitzgerald 45).Improvement, wealth, love, popularity: all contribute to the definition of the American Dream. What is missing from the preceding list is, however, perhaps the most important quality of all: that the American Dream is exactly that, a mere dream. "Our eyes can never see enough to be satisfied;...

Other Essays On The Great Gatsby -A Critical Analysis Of The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby The American Dream Analysis

916 words - 4 pages The American Dream The Great Gatsby, set during the Roaring Twenties, illustrates the beliefs, values, and ideals of the American population at that time. F. Scott Fitzgerald cleverly weaves an intricate story about these beliefs, values, and ideals, better known as the "American Dream." What once existed as a goal worked toward with aspiration, determination, and faith, the dream has changed into an insatiable desire for the money, wealth, and

Carraway -- A Character Analysis of Nick Carroway "The Great Gatsby" - Klein High School DC English - Essay

1007 words - 5 pages Smith 2 Xavier Smith Mrs. Black Eng. 1302 January 23rd, 2019 Carraway The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a novel set in America’s “Roaring Twenties” that details the fictional experiences of one Nick Carraway as he fruitlessly attempts to find fortune in eastern America. Fitzgerald uses Nick to serve as the narrator of the recounting as well as the moral anchor of the audience. Throughout the novel Nick Carraway displays traits

Character Analysis- The Great Gatsby - English III - character analysis

412 words - 2 pages Character Analysis: The Great Gatsby Directions: Analyze and compare the characters’ physical descriptions, home environments, actions, thoughts, character traits, and feelings. Choose two characters from the novel: Tom, Nick, Daisy or Jordan and choose quotes and adjectives to reveal their true character. Character’s Name: Daisy Tom Physical Description Beautiful “Her face was sad and lovely with bright things in it, bright eyes and a bright

The Great Gatsby Valley Of Ashes Setting - English - Great Gatsby Setting Assignments

481 words - 2 pages ​The Great Gatsby​ Valley Of Ashes Setting The Valley Of Ashes represents the ethical decay of gilded america. It's a symbol of the way of america scapegoats the negative and disadvantaged dumping ashes of their destruction of them. Ashes implies desolation, as the ashes is nothing but burnt items. The ash paints a picture of desolation that is required for industrialization that made sure men despicable men rich . Gatsby , Tom and upper society

The American Dream - "The Great Gatsby"

515 words - 3 pages Everybody has a concept of "The American Dream". Merriam-Webster's definition is: an American social ideal that stresses egalitarianism and especially material prosperity. To achieve the American Dream, a person should have money, upward mobility, cars, be married with the perfect average of 2.5 kids, and freedom. The person should be a hard working and self-made man to deserve what he has strived for.In "The Great Gatsby", by F. Scott

The Great Gatsby--Similarities Between Gatsby and Tom - English - Essay

1230 words - 5 pages Tirzah Harms Mr. Heuschel HEIII Period 11 29 May, 2019 Similarities in The Great Gatsby Characters ​¨It is understanding that gives us an ability to have peace. When we understand the other fellow's viewpoint, and he understands ours, then we can sit down and work out our differences.” (Harry Truman)​ ​says Harry Truman, 33rd United States President. This quote is food for thought, showing that understanding others can lead to a much greater

The reading of the Great Gatsby - literature - book report

1210 words - 5 pages Richael, 518141910031 Class: F181419102 Date: November 16, 2018 Book Report 2 The Great Gatsby The Reason Why Gatsby is Great The story of Gatsby took place in America in the 1920s, which is a brief and special period called the Jazz Age in the American past. It seems to be an elegiac personal love story, but actually a narrative of America's grand history. Gatsby is great due to his purity and romance, especially in contrast to the selfish and

A Woman's Role in the Great Gatsby - English - essay

1654 words - 7 pages has developed a hard shell to protect herself. Her thoughts and actions are all in response to the world around her and she has had to learn how to adapt to the people around her. Her actions around Tom vary to her actions around Gatsby which vary to her actions around Nick. Each man plays a different role in her life and she changes her actions around each of them. But there is one consistent trait she displays around all of them. This cynicism is a defense mechanism and in the end, she is merely trying to protect herself. Works Cited Fitzgerald, F. Scott. ​The Great Gatsby.​ Scribner, 2004.

The Significance of Color in The Great Gatsby

567 words - 3 pages In his novel The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald used the colors green, white, and yellow for symbolism-representing money, innocence, and corruption respectively. The use of symbolic color occurs throughout the novel, helping give a better understanding and description of characterization and setting.In literature, green is often used to symbolize money, envy, and in Gatsby, Jay Gatsby's love for Daisy Buchanan. Fitzgerald most often used

Nick Carraway, the narrator of the Great Gatsby - english - research

1139 words - 5 pages The Character of Nick Carraway Appearance - He is supposed to look like his great uncle - “Well rounded man” (pg 5) Motivation Goals · Nick himself tells us why he decided to move East and what in particular his goal or intention was. · He states that when he came back, he “wanted no more riotous excursions with privileged glimpses into the human heart.” ( pg 2) · He wanted to become a well rounded man again essentially although he hates new

Characterization of The Great Gatsby - American Literature - Essay

523 words - 3 pages Smith 1 Smith 2 Payton Smith Schanhals American Literature 2 February 2018 Creating a Character:Analyzing Indirect Characterization of Jay Gatsby in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby By using indirect characterization, F. Scott Fitzgerald is able to successfully engage readers to further understand characters in selective ways. Indirect Characterization is defined as showing things that reveal the personality of the character (NCTE). Jay

Similar Papers

The Great Gatsby Essay

544 words - 3 pages Summary The story begins with Nick Carraway, the narrator, talking about his father's point of views on life and people. He also talks about how his grandfather's brother started his lineage in the U.S. His great uncle sent a substitute for himself during the Civil War and started a hardware business in Minnesota that Nick's father still runs today. Nick moved from his rural life in Minnesota after enlisting in the army and fighting in

The Great Gatsby Essay

657 words - 3 pages The Great GatsbyIn today society, many people like to follow the current.They want to catch the wave. Which mean, it does not matterif things were good or bad, right or wrong, they just follow anddo them without any thinking. Therefore, there are not too manypeople would like to be a normal, thoughtful nor neutral person.However, in the novel, The Great Gatsby, by Scott Fitzgerald, oneof the character name is Nike Carroway, he was the good

The Great Gatsby Essay

567 words - 3 pages The Great Gatsby Review The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a classic in American literature. Written more than seventy years ago, it has withstood the test of time, and it's impact has not been lost. Set in the "roaring twenties," it's the story of the wealthy Jay Gatsby and how he influences the narrator (Nick Carraway, his next-door neighbor) and others. Throughout the story it becomes evident that Gatsby is in love with Daisy

The Great Gatsby Essay

1542 words - 7 pages May 24 3U English- The Great Gatsby Themes and Techniques Dialogue F. Scott Fitzgerald did a very unusual thing by having Nick Carraway as the narrator for The Great Gatsby. Having him tell the story means that the reader is subject to seeing everything through the eyes of Nick, whether these things are other characters, situations or events. Normally then, a novel might become incredibly boring after some time. For it seems that, in