Symbolism of Gatsby's Estate in 'The Great Gatsby'

1031 Words4 Pages
The Great Gatsby: Symbolism of Gatsby's estate The Great Gatsby is a novel about the American Dream and its failed promise. In the novel, the bootlegger Jay Gatsby accumulates a fabulous amount of wealth to impress his beloved childhood sweetheart Daisy Buchannan. But all of the wealth in the world cannot buy Gatsby 'class.' Gatsby's failure to recognize this is symbolized in his acquisition of a bloated, palatial home in which he holds frequent, boozy parties. The falseness of the home symbolizes the falseness of the life Gatsby is creating to impress others and lead the American Dream of success. Gatsby's rented estate is located in the less fashionable West Egg section of Long Island, versus East Egg where Daisy and her husband Tom dwell. East Egg is where the exemplars of 'old money' like the Buchanans reside. At Gatsby's estate, there is evidence of incredible wealth, and no evidence of working: "At high tide in the afternoon I watched his guests diving from the tower of his raft, or taking the sun on the hot sand of his beach while his two motor-boats slit the waters of the Sound, drawing aquaplanes over cataracts of foam" (Chapter 3). Gatsby creates an impression that he is a man of leisure who does not need to work, partially to suggest that he is leading a life like Tom Buchanan, and also to hide the fact that the house was bought with ill-gotten gains. The house is stuffed with people, to make Gatsby feel socially successful, but Gatsby seems to know hardly
Get Access