This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Corruption Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald

1027 words - 5 pages

In the novel The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald gives the reader a glimpse into the life of the high class during the 1920’s through the eyes of a man named Nick Carraway. Through the narrator's dealings with high society, Fitzgerald demonstrates how modern values have transformed the American dream's ideas into a scheme for materialistic power and he reveals how the world of high society lacks any sense of morals or consequence. In order to support his message, Fitzgerald presents the original aspects of the American dream along with its modern face to show that the wanted dream is now lost forever to the American people. Jay Gatsby had a dream and did everything he could to achieve it however in the end he failed to. This reveals that the American dream is not always a reality that can be obtained. Fitzgerald demonstrates how a dream can become corrupted by one’s focus on acquiring wealth and power through imagery, symbolism, and characterization.
First, Fitzgerald’s use of religious imagery shows how the American dream is corrupted. Gatsby changes his name, like creating himself a new one, this makes his life more like that of God. Daisy Buchanan is compared to the “Holy Grail” and Gatsby’s dream is like a knight’s quest, showing once again the goal of the dream of having her. After the car accident, Gatsby looks over Daisy from her yard and tries to protect her. His watch over her window is compared to a vigil and while Nick talked to Gatsby that night, he feels that his presence was ruining the “sacredness” of the moment. However, Gatsby’s vigil was over nothing. Daisy was never in her room that night, much like Gatsby’s dream is over a nonexistent person. The Daisy he met and fell in love with years ago is not the same person anymore, and as much as Gatsby thinks that he can repeat the past, in the real world it is proven to be impossible. His faith is misplaced, because the object of his quest is nothing more than Daisy.
Then, Fitzgerald uses symbolism to show how the American dream died out. The sense of hopelessness at the end of the novel proves that the purity of the American dream is dead with Gatsby's death and George Wilson's suicide. The first hint of tragedy begins when the Buchanan's daughter is brought into the salon and Nick observes an obvious disturbance in Gatsby's attitude and thinking, "Gatsby and I in turn leaned down and took the small reluctant hand. Afterward he kept looking at the child with surprise. I don't think he had ever really believed in its existence before" (117). Daisy then calls her child an "absolute little dream", crushing all of Gatsby's hopes of recreating the past. Then the transition of the American dream with materialism is pointed out moments later when Nick and Gatsby try to distinguish the charm in Daisy's voice. At that moment Gatsby says, "her voice is full of money", and Nicks reaches a revelation about society: "That was...

Find Another Essay On Corruption of the American Dream in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The American Dream in The Great Gatsby The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

730 words - 3 pages Jay Gatsby, the central character of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby symbolizes the American dream. The American dream offers faith in the possibility of a better life. Its intention is the belief that material wealth alone can bring that dream to reality. Through Gatsby, Fitzgerald brings together both these ideas. Jay Gatsby thinks money is the answer to anything he encounters. He has the best of everything. The fanciest car, the

The American Dream in The Great Gatsby. F. Scott Fitzgerald

1555 words - 6 pages To some people in this world the most important thing to them is to fulfill their American dream. The American dream has changed throughout the years, but one thing that hasn’t changed is how important that dream is to people. One great example of the importance of the American dream is The Great Gatsby. F. Scott Fitzgerald puts a lot of detail and mystery into his book trying to make people think about what each characters dream was

"The Great Gatsby" By F. Scott Fitzgerald. Discusses The American Dream In The Great Gatsby

1121 words - 5 pages more and more infatuated with possessions. The characters in F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel The Great Gatsby each work for their own American Dream. Jay Gatsby, the central character of the novel, has worked from nothing to become a very successful man. Jay is successful in the meaning that he is very rich and has everything most of the people in the novel would want. This is not what Jay is striving for though. Jay doesn't care about the money, cars

The American Dream Is Hard to Achieve in the Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

909 words - 4 pages The American Dream is hard to achieve The Great Gatsby”, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, portrays a world filled with rich societal activities, love affairs, and dishonesty. Nick Carraway is the busy narrator of the book, a curious choice considering that he is in a different class and almost in a different world than Gatsby and the other characters. Nick relates the plot of the story to the reader as a part of Gatsby’s circle. He has hesitant

The American Dream Ideal in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

1712 words - 7 pages idea of “The American Dream” is mostly shown in Gatsbys character, his “new “ life consisted of his vast amount of wealth, charisma, bravery, extraordinariness, and unkown lies of education.. Works Cited Fitzgerald, Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner, 2004.

The American Dream in The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald

1137 words - 5 pages what this earlier period is remembered for. In addition, this revolution transformed many of the great writers and authors of the time as well as their various works. The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, perfectly symbolizes many emergent trends of the 1920’s. More importantly the character of Jay Gatsby is depicted as a man amongst his American dream and the trials he faces in the pursuit of its complete achievement. His drive for

The American Dream in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

1267 words - 5 pages ), America in the 1920’s, Retrieved December 5, 2013 from http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk/America_economy_1920s.htm Unknown author, but a Princeton.edu website (Unknown Year), F. Scott Fitzgerald Papers, Retrieved December 5, 2013 from http://www.princeton.edu/~rbsc/research/tutorial/lib-fitzaid.html Shmoop Editorial Team. (2008, November 11). The Great Gatsby. Retrieved April 23, 2014 from http://www.shmoop.com/great-gatsby/

Chasing the American Dream in The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald

1025 words - 4 pages . Also Nick breaks up with Jordan, and he moves back to Midwest because he has had enough of these people, and hates the people that were close to Gatsby and for bareness, emptiness, and cold heart they have of the life in the middle of the wealthy on the East Coast. Nick realizes, and reveals that Gatsby’s dream of Daisy was ruined by money and un-loyalty, dishonestly. Daisy all she cared about is wealth, she chased after the men that have a lot

The American Dream as portrayed in "Great Gatsby", by F. Scott Fitzgerald

565 words - 2 pages The American dream is interwoven and deeply embedded in every fabric of American life. It has also been the focal point of many novels in American literature. This dream, as seen in "The Great Gatsby", is associated with rugged individualism, generous enthusiasm and idealism in the pursuit of success. Dating back to our puritan heritage, the idea that hard work, following the rules, and "being good" has attracted many immigrants to our shores

The American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

1239 words - 5 pages The American Dream in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, and The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald In a majority of literature written in the 20th century, the theme of the ' American Dream" has been a prevalent theme. This dream affects the plot and characters of many novels, and in some books, the intent of the author is to illustrate the reality of the American Dream. However, there is no one definition of the American

The American Dream: F. Scott Fitzgerald - "The Great Gatsby"

1679 words - 7 pages activities and immoral values are factors that have contributed to the corruption of the American Dream. F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel The Great Gatsby clearly shows how the American Dream has become corrupt and how it has become less about the hard work, and more about the results that are obtained through any means possible.In the novel The Great Gatsby, the corruption of the American Dream is shown in part by the greed of the characters. Greed is

Similar Essays

The Corruption Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald

681 words - 3 pages The Corruption of the American Dream in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald The Great Gatsby, a novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is about the corruption of the American Dream, and the downfall of those who attempt to attain its illusionary goals. As the novel shows, the 20th century is a moral wasteland and a corruption of the original idealistic American Dream of the past. Fitzgerald's moral wasteland is shown physically in the "valley of

The Corruption Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby By F Scott Fitzgerald

1218 words - 5 pages The American Dream is portrayed by a dreamer who pursues to progress form scratch to riches, while gaining love, social status, wealth and power. Those in power, typically involving bribery, portray corruption as dishonest or fraudulent conduct. This applies to the western world where corruption is contributing to the downfall of society. Corruption in society is what leads us to think of the nation in a pessimistic way. In the novel, The Great

Corruption Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald

1437 words - 6 pages Broken Dreams and Fallen Themes In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald employs the use of characters, themes, and symbolism to convey the idea of the American Dream and its corruption through the aspects of wealth, family, and status. In regards to wealth and success, Fitzgerald makes clear the growing corruption of the American Dream by using Gatsby himself as a symbol for the corrupted dream throughout the text. In addition, when portraying the

Corruption In The Great Gatsby, By F. Scott Fitzgerald

650 words - 3 pages The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is about corruption and reveals the dishonesty of people in the era. People such as Jordan Baker, Meyer Wolfsheim and Tom Buchanan display their deceptive ways in this novel. First off, Jordan Baker, a young golf champion, reveals her corruptive ways when Nick recalls that “at her first big golf tournament there was a row that nearly reached the newspapers-a suggestion that she had moved