The American Dream In The Great Gatsby Analysis

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The American dream is the idea of the perfect family and a house with a white picket fence; some people strive their whole life to achieve the dream, but the dream is unachievable—there is no such thing as perfect. The Balance’s article What Is the American Dream? The History That Made It Possible by Kimberly Amadeo says: “In the 1920s, the American Dream started morphing from the right to create a better life to the desire to acquire material things. This change was described in the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel, The Great Gatsby. In it, the character Daisy Buchanan cries when she sees Jay Gatsby’s shirts, because she’s ‘never seen such—such beautiful shirts before.’” The American dream in very present in Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me and Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry. Ta-Nehisi Coates titles his book Between the World and Me because he feels that there is a barrier between him and the American dream, it is similar to Lorraine Hansberry’s Raisin in the Sun the Younger family’s dream keeps getter deferred and it dries up like a raisin in the sun. In Between the World and Me Ta-Nehisi Coates is writing a letter to his son about how he wants him to live his life. Coates writes: “The Dream thrives on generalization, on limiting the number of possible questions, on privileging immediate answers. The Dream is the enemy of all art, courageous thinking, and honest writing. And it became clear that this was not just for the dreams concocted by Americans to justify themselves, but also for the dreams that I had conjured to replace them”(Coates 55). Coates feels that the people that believe that they are living the American dream are white trying to “justify themselves” and live the perfect life. He is saying that the dream is something that will kill individuality because it would be everyone living the same way. He does not believe in the American dream, but maybe at one time he did. He doesn’t want his son to strive for something that will never happen. A big part of Coates not believing in the great American dream is due to the color of his skin; a lot of the book is telling his son, Samori, how to survive in a white dominated world. Coates also writes “the Dream rest on our backs, the
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