The term “The American Dream” was coined in 1931 by American writer James Truslow Adams and described America as a place of opportunity based on one’s ability and hard work. Although the term originated in 1931, the fundamental ideas of the American Dream debuted in 1920’s society and contrasted greatly with previous notions of a stagnant class structure. This was due to the booming post-WWI economy, which provided an increase in accessibility to leisure items and activities, allowing luxuries typically reserved for the upper class to be enjoyed by the masses. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby, published in 1925, reflects these social and economic changes. The novel follows the rise and fall of Jay Gatsby, who achieved prosperity in spite of being born the son of a poor, North Dakota farmer. Though many believed in an emergence of class mobility in the 1920’s, the novel The Great Gatsby demonstrates the ultimate inaccessibility of the American Dream - a holistic realization of social and economic equality.
Gatsby and the American Dream Have you ever wondered who could ever live the American dream? In The Great Gatsby, Gatsby is the main character and in love with something he does not have, but lives a dream to others. He has all the money he needs to throw parties and have fancy things. Gatsby is considered to be living the American Dream. In the book by F. Scott Fitzgerald shows how Gatsby represents and lives the American dream. In the book The Great Gatsby, it shows how Gatsby lives the American Dream.
It’s called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it” (George Carlin). George Carlin, criticizes the dream of prosperity, a promise to any individual for happiness and material success, if they try hard enough, Carlin realizes the reality of the unobtainable dream. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Fitzgerald offers an insight to the lavish life of the 1920’s, or as he coined, The Jazz Age. The novel follows the character of Nick Carraway as he learns the tragedy of an excessive lifestyle that is lived by Jay Gatsby, Tom and Daisy Buchanan. Fitzgerald is able to see past all the luxury and grandeur to expose the unhappiness and misery that tells the reader that money does not bring true joy. The novel describes
The 1920’s was a decade of striving for prosperity and the American dream. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s historical fiction novel, The Great Gatsby, Jay Gatsby builds his way up to wealth and does everything he can to attain his goal, but is ultimately unable to attain it. Through his decision to set up The Great Gatsby as a frame story, Fitzgerald conveys the theme that the American dream is not necessary attainable, no matter how much one sacrifices or works towards it.
There's always a start and an end to a dream. From the start line to the finish line of living out the dream. Gatsby represents the American Dream, he had started near the start line. The start line represents that there's both an advantage & disadvantages, the certain kind that not everyone has the same opportunities for and they’re not in the same social status.
shirts and began throwing them, one by one, before us, shirts of sheer linen and thick silk and fine flannel… Suddenly, with a strained sound, Daisy bent her head into the shirts and began to cry stormily. ‘They’re such beautiful shirts,’ she sobbed, her voice muffled in the thick folds” (Fitzgerald 92). Daisy had married Tom and he was wealthy but when she went to Gatsby’s mansion, she realized the extent of his wealth. Gatsby and Daisy’s main focus in their lives was money. Money was all they really cared about. “Jay Gatsby’s quest, the wealthy Daisy, represents the emptiness of an American society focused on money, a sordid but accurate view of the American Dream” (Adamson 25). The American society is basically empty with a large focus on money rather than the significant things in life.
What is the American Dream? Is it wealth and power? Or is it liberty and freedom? The American Dream is different for every individual. In Gatsby’s case, his dream revolves around the pursuit of Daisy. The Declaration of Independence states, “All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and pursuit of Happiness.” This statement compresses the wide array of American Dreams into one statement. The pursuit of happiness is different for every human being. Gatsby’s dream was to rise out of a low economic level and into high wealth, winning Daisy over along the way. “The dream of finding fortune, fame, and true love is something that almost all Americans strive for” (Galley). Gatsby was too ambitious in the pursuit of his dream. During his struggle for Daisy, he failed to recognize that his vision was not attainable. The American Dream causes corruption in the world.
As humans, we crave love and affection from others, and in order to live the “American Dream” money is a necessity. It was the infectious love of money that brought Nick, a wealthy veteran who wanted more out of life, to the Eggs. More importantly, the love that Gatsby had for Daisy motivated him to live the life of the rich and prove it. The characters were influenced by the love of money, or money bringing love. Love and lust could be completely changed when money was thrown in, and for the characters in the book, there was never enough.
The American Dream is something every American wants to have in life, even those outside of America. Everyone thinks that they have a dream that once they achieve it everything about life will be so perfect and nothing could go wrong. In The Great Gatsby it shows how it is not always perfect. Fitzgerald’s idea of the American Dream was depicted in his book. It shows how his American Dream never made him happy.
The "American Dream" is a frequently used term to reference to the opportunity to move up in social status, create a family, and live a comfortable life. Somewhere in the 1920s the “American Dream” got a new meaning, and that meaning for a lot of people was greed. The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald shows the corrupt nature of the American Dream through some of its main characters. F Scott Fitzgerald shows the frailty of the American Dream with Jay Gatsby the protagonist of the story. Gatsby had a huge desire to succeed in everything, the root of this desire was to impress the love of his life, Daisy .
According to Lily Rothman from TIME, “People whose annual income is between $50,000 and $74,999 are happier than people who earn between $75,000 and $99,999.” This startling statistic relates to how Gatsby, a very rich man, felt. In The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, it is revealed that even if you are successful and rich, you may not be able to find happiness. This reveals the idea of the “American Dream” is a complete myth, because even if you succeed in life, it doesn’t mean you will be happy. Fitzpatrick shows this theme by making Jay Gatsby unable to get Daisy Buchanan, the girl he wants, when he is a poor, young man.
The 1920’s was a period of time where many people held the belief that they could diminish the power held by the established elite and provide social mobility for everyone. Prior to this time period, many Americans were more frugal, and it was harder for families to truly escape the cycle of poverty they had struggled with for so long. These new modern beliefs encouraged people to go against the traditional role society had given them. Prominent characters from the novel The Great Gatsby attempted to pursue this newfound American Dream held by society. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, the belief that people could obtain social mobility conflicted with the reality that the traditional social hierarchy was only accessible for high class Americans.
The early 1920’s were a time when the economy began to soar, and the notion of the American dream began to take effect. The American Dream is the idea that anyone can come from any background and no matter who they are, if they work hard and stay true to themselves, they can achieve their dreams. The Great Gatsby, set in the early twenties, displays that socio-economic power is obtained through inheritance, forming an aristocracy of power and wealth. The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, demonstrates how geography and location dictate where the social-class level of an individual exists permanently in society. Furthermore, illusion and affectation portrayed in the novel to conceive the image of power and wealth in a way for
The American Dream is the ultimate goal which many members of the working class strive to achieve. The main idea of this dream is that with hard work and determination, one can become successful in their field. Despite being a prevalent belief in American culture, this magnificent goal can also take the form of an illusion. In The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the American Dream is represented by Jay Gatsby’s desperate pining for Daisy Buchanan–an unobtainable goal which will effectively result in a delusional state of being.
The Great Gatsby is a novel written by Scott Fitzgerald, in which the corruption associated with the american dream is criticized. There are many examples of Fitzgerald’s critics of the ideal american dream, and through his examples it offers insight to the life of american citizens during the jazz age. Throughout the novel it is evident that Fitzgerald associates the american dream with corruption and the belief that money is the solution to every problem an american might run into during the setting of this novel.