Role Of Identity In The Great Gatsby

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Great Gatsby Essay
In The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald displays society’s role in transforming one’s identity by creating complex and realistic characters. Jay Gatsby is a prime example of how one will change themselves to accommodate society. Once a poor son from a farming family, Gatsby puts up an extravagant facade to hopefully win a woman over, however in the process, puts aside morals and values. Fitzgerald demonstrates the importance of social expectations, wealth and the perception of the American Dream are in determining one’s identity.

Fitzgerald exhibits how social expectations leads one to reinvent oneself to seek approval by society through Gatsby. One day, seventeen year old James Gatz saves a helpless Dan Cody (a wealthy copper mogul) from a storm who repays the favor by taking James Gatz in. Afterwards, Cody asks James for his name thus where Jay Gatsby was formed. One can assume that Jay Gatsby was born so James could finally leave his old life of being the son of a poor farmer and start a new life as the bold and wealthy Jay Gatsby. Another instance where Gatsby tries to please society is by hosting large, lavish and prestigious parties. Consequently, by having large parties, Gatsby allows everyone to party and have fun under his expense to seek approval from everyone else. Leaving James Gatz behind, becoming Jay Gatsby and having parties are all linked to how Gatsby changed his identity in order to meet social expectations. The American Dream for
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