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Why Is Gatsby So Great? Essay

1075 words - 4 pages

A dream is defined as: a fanciful vision of the conscious mind; a fond hope or aspiration; anything so lovely, transitory, etc. as to seem dreamlike. In the beginning pages of Fitzgerald's "The Great Gatsby", Nick Carraway, the narrator of the story gives the audience a glimpse into Gatsby's idealistic dream which is later disintegrated. "No- Gatsby turned out all right at the end; it is what preyed on Gatsby, what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elation's of men." Gatsby's character is slowly revealed to us, slowly and skillfully, and with a keen tenderness which in the end makes his tragedy such a moving one. What might one say about Gatsby? What did Fitzgerald mean when he named his novel the "Great Gatsby?" It is evident how long Gatsby held on to his dream, after evolving from an ordinary, lower-class, citizen but becoming this lavishing, extravagant wealthy man. After meeting Daisy, Gatsby has a reason to strive to become prominent. Throughout his life, Gatsby deserved the title of being "great".Even before Gatsby was introduced, Nick hints that Gatsby is ordinary from the beginning. The first evidence of this is when Nick says, "Gatsby turned all right in the end." There is a constant mysteriousness of surrounding Gatsby. Everyone knows of him, but no one really knows where he is from or who he really is. Even from the reader's first glimpse of Gatsby, we see that he is reaching out for something only he can see. There are many stories flying around about Gatsby. For instance, Jordan makes a comment, "I think he killed a man." As Gatsby invites Nick to lunch in New York, Gatsby confesses to Nick about his past, even though most of it was made up. He tells Nick he inherited great wealth from his family, but in reality, Gatsby gained his wealth all on his own. Although Gatsby lied, the fact that he made all his wealth on his own makes him greater than any other individual. Dan Cody, Gatsby's close friend found Gatsby to be "...quickly and extravagantly ambitious." He took Gatsby in and treated almost as a son. Gatsby was to inherit Cody's wealth after his death but was stripped of his inheritance by Ella Kaye.In 1917, Louisville, Gatsby was introduced to Daisy. She was the only thing that mattered to him. It takes great dignity to have love for only one person. Although Daisy did not deserve Gatsby, he remained loyal to her until the end. Daisy was both the main cause of Gatsby's greatness, and also the only cause of foolishness in his life. His absolute love and devotion for her is what destroyed him, even before his death. As the Great War arrived, Gatsby and Nick both served as officers. He tells Nick, "then the war came..it was a great relief, and I tried very hard to die." However, Gatsby survived the war, and with great rewards as well. Even during war times, Gatsby demonstrated his greatness in being a superb soldier. Upon his return to...

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