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Disillusionment Of The American Dream Essay

973 words - 4 pages

Olivia DeCapriNovember 5, 2013English 11: 3BThe Great Gatsby EssayDisillusionment of the American DreamIn F. Scott Fitzgerald's, The Great Gatsby, a classic piece of American literature, the American dream is a prominent theme. In The Great Gatsby, the wealthy society in America has lost their innocence as a whole. The main characters in the novel dream for so much more than what they can have. But, the characters are so immoral and corrupt that the American dream is unachievable. An American dream is pure and un-corruptible, earned from working hard and playing by the rules. Disillusionment of the American dream is revealed through corrupt business, unmoral romances, false hope, and loss of innocence.Corrupt business is a main part of the roaring 20s. Underground business emerged and people made millions. One of these persons happens to be Jay Gatsby. As a young child Gatsby was poor, but while helping a rich captain over seas he learns how to be a gentlemen and become wealthy. Gatsby always dreamed of having a perfect life. When others would see his house, or go to the parties he held, they would think that he has achieved the American dream. He in-fact, did not. He still always wants more and his way of acquiring his wealth is dishonest and this completely contradicts the meaning of the American dream. For example, Tom states, "'I found out what your "drug-stores" were.' He turned to us and spoke rapidly. 'He and this Wolfshiem bought up a lot of side-street drug-stores here and in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter. That's one of his little stunts. I picked him for a bootlegger the first time I saw him, and I wasn't far wrong.'" (pg. 127). This quote shows that even though Gatsby is making a lot of money, he is morally not right, and having good morals is apart of achieving the American dream.Along with corrupt business, the romances in the Great Gatsby are mostly morally wrong. The age of the 20s in American mark time period where affairs become more common among the wealthy. In the novel Tom and Daisy are both cheating on each other. Gatsby and Daisy have an affair; this is what Gatsby wanted so much, Daisy. Even though Gatsby and Daisy can be together sometimes and have an affair, this is not enough for Gatsby. Gatsby's dream is not Daisy, but his past memory of her. "Gatsby's own devotion to her has a permanence that Daisy cannot live up to; yet Gatsby seems committed to an idea of Daisy that he has created rather than the real woman she is." (Janet Giltrow "Style as Politics in The Great Gatsby"). Gatsby will never be able to have what he truly wants out of Daisy because it is impossible. He can not achieve his dream because it is based upon immorality and lies.Including immoral romances, false hope is...

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