A Society Without Morals - The Great Gatsby

891 Words 4 Pages
The streets are paved with gold has long been the allusion of the United States of America meaning that America is the land of opportunity and wealth for anyone. However what people fail to understand when they manage to get to America is that, although it is the land of opportunity, an individual is not able to magically go from dirt poor to filthy rich, they have to work for it. Even after working for it many people are disappointed not because they did not get more money, they just did not as much as the expected. In the 1920s this was because of all the illegal activity that was happening through out the country, mainly bootleggers such as Jay Gatsby. With illegal activity comes lack of moral conscience such as marrying for money or …show more content…
(Fitzgerald 141). Gatsby being able to break the law, make a lot of money, and never get caught is a clear illustration of the failures of society during the 1920s. Having the ability to break the law also causes people to have lack of moral conscience even if they disapprove of bootleggers. Tom Buchanan and Myrtle Wilson?s immorality becomes apparent when the reader finds out that Tom and Myrtle are having an affair. This is clear attempt by Fitzgerald to display the lack of care for morals in 1920 America. Tom is married to Daisy and Myrtle is married to George, however they both have no problem in deceiving their spouses and supposed love for life. What Fitzgerald really does to prove lack of care in the 1920s is make it very clear to the reader that everyone is aware of the affair. This is revealed to the reader when Jordan Baker, a friend of the Buchanan says to Nick, the narrator, ??You mean you don?t know?? Miss Baker, honestly surprised. ?I thought everyone knew.?? This quotation makes it obvious to the reader that although everyone in the novel knows of the affair, nobody does anything to stop it, therefore displaying to the reader the lack interest people have in the affair going on between Tom and Myrtle. Even Daisy, Tom?s wife, does not do anything about it, pointing to the flaw that people married for money and not love in the 1920s. Daisy and Tom?s marriage is a symbol for the mistake many people make by marrying for a