Great Gatsby - the Green Light

1554 Words7 Pages
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald deals on one level with Jay Gatsby’s hopes and dreams, but on a deeper level also deals with the Great American Dream. The novel starts and ends with a reference to the green light at the end of the dock, indicating an important symbolism. The first time Nick catches sight of Jay Gatsby, Gatsby “stretched his arms towards the dark water […] [Nick] distinguished nothing except a single green light […] that might have been at the end of a dock.” (Fitzgerald 2000:25). Fitzgerald ends the novel by again referring to the “green light at the end of Daisy’s dock.” (171).

The protagonist of the novel is Jay Gatsby, a wealthy young man from the Midwest, who has moved to the New York in the East to pursue
…show more content…
This superficiality is the ultimate moral corruption and Daisy clearly represents these lack of values.

The class divide between rich and poor is clearly illustrated by George Wilson, who lives on the edge of the valley of ashes. He is doomed to be viewed as unsuccessful and inferior, both by the wealthy inhabitants of the Eggs and by his wife, who betrays him with Tom. Clearly, character is not what people value. Wilson is an honest, hardworking man, while Tom is a rather unsavoury character. This corruption of values appears throughout the novel, with the desolate wasteland of the valley of ashes represents the moral decay of the 1920’s. Just as people travel from the Eggs to New York without really noticing the decay, so they pursue their dreams at any cost, not taking heed of the lack of moral fibre and the corruption that money and power brings. It is fitting that Tom’s mistress lives and dies in this grey wasteland. It is also where Nick meets her for the first time.

Gatsby’s dream of Daisy serves to put her on a pedestal. Nick realises that even Gatsby must have understood this:
There must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled short of his dreams - not through her own fault, but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion. (92).

When he eventually engineers their meeting through Nick, he realises that she is not the perfect woman he has

More about Great Gatsby - the Green Light

Open Document