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Forces Of Love Essay

1568 words - 7 pages

In the novel, “The Great Gatsby”, F. Scott Fitzgerald used social values, personal assumptions and denial to influence the choices Gatsby and Daisy made surrounding their relationship. Setting the novel during the 1920’s, Fitzgerald was able to incorporate historical events, like Prohibition and World War I, into his story. He was also able to incorporate the dramatic changes in thinking and socially acceptable behavior of this time. Frederick Lewis Allen described this period between WWI and the notorious stock-market crash as a “revolution in manners and morals” (The 1920s), which Fitzgerald describes throughout his book. With the end of WWI, the nation entered a time known as ...view middle of the document...

Meeting Daisy only reinforced this stigma and his need for wealth. Daisy’s born wealth made Gatsby feel the need for social status to be a worthy suitor. His hunger to provide Daisy with the life style she had always known consumed him from that point on.
Daisy also let social stigmas influence her actions. Although, many women chose not to marry right away and Daisy clearly loved Gatsby, she gave into the Victorian ideals and married Tom to have a traditional provider. Media of this time endorsed the idea a woman’s economic security and social status was linked to the success of their marriage (Benner). Even with the new opportunities in education and the workforce, marriage still held a high priority with many women and could explain why Daisy decided to move on (Benner). These decisions set Gatsby and Daisy on a downward spiral of heartache and sacrifices.
After meeting Daisy, Gatsby spent the next five years accumulating wealth and stature in an effort to impress her. He stayed connected to her through the media reports and newspaper clippings he collected, while never truly knowing her. His personal assumptions form an idea of who Daisy had become and the loyalty of her love that would reunite them. He never stops to fathom the possibility of Daisy’s bond to Tom after their years of marriage. In an effort to win Daisy, Gatsby sacrificed any chance he had of moving on and having a healthy relationship with someone else. His unrealistic expectation for her to have feelings for him alone only demonstrated his lack of understanding towards Daisy’s situation. Gatsby’s biggest problem was that he had fell in love with his own preconceived idea of Daisy that she could not even live up too.
At the same time, Daisy had not only sacrificed her chance to marry for love by marrying Tom, she had committed to a marriage full of adultery. Tom repeatedly cheated on her and made little effort to hide it. The burden of their relationship weighted on Daisy and her outlook on life changed over time. She believed it was better for a women to act oblivious, as she hoped for her daughter, “… the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool” (Fitzgerald 1.17). She embraced the value of wealth and social status over love and faithfulness and accepted the state of her marriage. Until she stood face to face with Gatsby in Nick’s living room, she assumed her relationship with Gatsby was only a memory. In that moment, Daisy made an assumption that would change her image of Gatsby forever. She assumed that after dedicating his every move to her, he would be able to understand and accept that over time she had developed feelings for another man.
Once the affair with Gatsby began, part of Daisy relished the moments that she had only known in dreams. She found her peak of happiness in denial. She denied the reality that she was not committed to Gatsby in the same way he was to her. She denied the fact that she not only...

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