The Great Gatsby : An American Nightmare

Better Essays
Alex Joo
Mr. Shaffer
January 8th, 2015
The Great Gatsby: an American Nightmare At the end of the day everyone ends up in the same place—six feet under. By then, many end up having lived fulfilling lives and die with no regrets. Far too many do not. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, presents the issue in pursuing the impossible: the American Dream. A dream in which all are “able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable” (Adams 215). Unfortunately, the latter does not hold true. In Fitzgerald’s own endeavour to lead a successful life, his professional advances conflicted with his ability to maintain a healthy relationship with his wife. Regardless of his abilities, Fitzgerald would not have ever been able to realise his American Dream due to investing all his time in forcing a lifestyle that was seen as ideal. In the novel, Fitzgerald’s characters follow suit. Despite his tireless effort and sacrifice to maintain a life for which his wife could enjoy, George Wilson loses her due to a lack of wealth and status. Similarly, Jay Gatsby’s dishonest attempt to create an ideal image to win over his former lover’s heart is in vain as he proceeded to do so by nefarious means—only to fail. Both Fitzgerald and his characters attempt to fulfill unrealistic dreams that society has subconsciously imposed on them, ultimately setting them up for failure. The American Dream is purely a facade utilised to justify the pursuit of endless desires by any
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