The Great Gatsby: Reality of the American Dream
The simple definition of the American dream is a state of happiness a person hopes to achieve by obtaining materialistic prosperity through hard work. This however has not always been the dream. In early America the dream of many was to venture west, find land, and start a family, but as time progressed the dream has transformed into a need for materialistic possessions such as a car or a large house. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald reveals the how corrupt the American Dream has become and how truly irrelevant money and worldly possessions are to becoming genuinely satisfied. He does this through his portrayal of Gatsby’s confused love for Daisy or the idea of Daisy, Daisy and Tom Buchanan’s marriage, and the death of Gatsby.
Fitzgerald uses Gatsby’s dream as a perfect example of the new mislead dream of many Americans in the 1920’s. Gatsby’s dream is centered on materials and their correlation with his happiness. Daisy, Gatsby’s old love becomes his obsession as she becomes and remains the center of Gatsby’s life even after she gets married. Gatsby’s dream was to acquire enough money and possessions so that he can woo Daisy into loving him and leaving Tom Buchanan. In hope of accomplishing his goal of being truly satisfied with his life, Gatsby purchases many expensive things that he doesn’t care for, or use. He also throws many enormous parties for many people although he rarely attends them and has very few actual friends, but as Fitzgerald portrays as the book progresses “morality and ethics have nothing to do with the qualities of ones parties” (Mellard857). Gatsby became infatuated with Daisy’s voice and described it as “full of money”; this reveals the immorality of Gatsby’s love for Daisy (38). Daisy’s voice holds the assurance of vast riches, but that is all it promises. Gatsby’s impure love for Daisy brings him nothing but sorrow. When he finally achieves his goal of taking back Daisy he is still unsatisfied with her, and attempted to force her into telling Tom Buchanan that she never loved him. This was Gatsby’s effort to “repeat the past” and recreate the pure love that he initially had for Daisy when they had first met many years ago (96). Gatsby’s failure to create true love and only being able to relate Daisy to money and materialistic values brings him no satisfaction and exemplifies the corruption of the new American dream.
Daisy and Tom Buchanan’s marriage is another instance of the crooked new American dream. They were both very rich and had very little worries in life: therefore, they were a prime example of what the new American dream was and that they should be full of...