The American Dream And Examples Of Its Portrayal In The Great Gatsby
The theme of this essay, The American Dream, is a topic ordinary to all of humanity, yet it holds to be something people see in many distinctive ways. Although the topic’s definition is different between certain people, they continue to share similar views on it. Generally, the dream is thought of as having higher privilege, doing amazing financially, and maybe even obtaining the perfect family for the future, but that is not always the case. Some people may even be blinded by the idea of how to achieve the American Dream, that they forget the main resource needed for the future. In the 1920’s the American Dream was introduced as a high expectation for most citizens in the United States. Considering Americans were suffering from the Great Depression and post-World War II, people saw the American Dream as “a decade of sacrifice and strife that brought hope and optimism”. Millions of individuals felt that if they continued to work as hard as possible and stayed clear away from the negative upcomings from war, they had a possibility of achieving this aspiration. Although nobody exactly knew what the term was meant or how to cope with it at the moment, “almost every aspect of American life contributed to sustaining to this dream”. Many people viewed the American Dream as a blockage of the destruction the Great Depression was manufacturing in numerous states. Citizens all over the world craved for the sensation of the American Dream because it “promised the deepest and richest self-fulfillment for those who would make the most of their natural abilities”. Regardless of the trouble of world communism and the likelihood of yet another war, America had confidence that it was a great time to stay alive. The American Dream was such an important topic that it was talked about in many stories, newspapers, novels, and many more, but where it got its most attention was in a book called The Great Gatsby, which will be analyzed in this essay.
There were multiple examples of how the American Dream was portrayed in The Great Gatsby. In one point of the story a character named Nick was getting used to the “West Egg” and stumbled upon his neighbor Gatsby who “stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and distinguished nothing but a single green light”. Gatsby was well known in the story as having luxuries any person would dream to have and throwing the most extravagant parties. Although he portrayed everybody else’s dreams, he hasn’t completed his. Gatsby wanted a woman named Daisy who he had fallen madly in love with. The green light in the dark water for Gatsby represented Daisy, or in other words, his American Dream. Daisy herself would also be a prime example of having the American Dream. She was married to a wealthy man, and usually got everything she could ever ask for. However, Daisy was in a confliction of love and what she once viewed as her American Dream. Before she got married to Tom, Gatsby sent her a pearl necklace in which she then replied, ‘Take ’em down-stairs and give ’em back to whoever they belong to. Tell ’em all Daisy’s change’ her mind. Say: ‘Daisy’s change’ her mind!”. The confliction was too much for Daisy to bare, so she then decided to engorge her actual emotions with her and many other people’s perspective of the American Dream. In the story, the reader starts to see Gatsby and Daisy rekindling on their once relationship. It was seen at many moments as though Daisy and Gatsby would end up being together again and accomplishing what they’ve both wanted all along, but things started to take a wrong turn. The audience was immediately shocked when they saw the words “a cluster of leaves revolved it slowly, tracing, like the leg of transit, a thin red circle in the water”. Gatsby was shot and killed by a man named George Wilson, who thought Gatsby killed and was having an affair with his wife Myrtle, when it was coincidentally Tom who had an affair with her, and Daisy who killed her.
Most people may say that Gatsby’s love for Daisy blinded everything else that came his way, which got him assassinated in the first place, but what the audience needs to understand is Gatsby had longed for his dream with Daisy since he first laid eyes on her. As soon as he got a simple experience of how to achieve his American Dream, Gatsby couldn’t help but to only focus on getting the full experience for a lifetime. His whole life he got what he wanted, so the thought of not having what he thought was his main resource, Daisy, killed him internally. “Not only had the American Dream been corrupted but that it was, in part anyway, necessarily corrupted, for it asked too much”. No one sensed better than Gatsby that nothing had the capability to meet the display of his own fantasy. Daisy being at the end of the story with Tom also had many controversies. She had stated and even shown that she did not love Tom as much as she loved Gatsby. “Daisy had produced an idealism so impalpable that she had lost touch with reality (Gatsby) and a materialism so heavy that it was inhuman (Tom)”. It was clearly shown that it was too much for Daisy to handle all at once. Daisy was already married to Tom and even had a daughter together, but when her true love came back into her life, everything turned upside down and turned into a battle of confliction.
To conclude the essay, it can be noticed that in today’s aspect, The American Dream is still pertained to many people’s standards and goals for the future. It is easier to obtain the dream now than in the 1920’s considering there are easier ways to communicate, new technologies, programs, and many more. Many people now long for the same things back then, like having the perfect family and receiving good payment. Although it’s easier to obtain the American Dream now than in the 1920’s, some people still have not gotten the main resource for the achievement and that is….Pure Happiness.
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