Trying to Control the Uncontrollable
Control is often the characteristic that individuals think that they always have. This concept is seen in Fitzgerald’s book, The Great Gatsby, where characters of high economic status often try to control every aspect of their lives. Fitzgerald’s story, which follows a middle-class character, Nick Carraway, describes his experiences with these kinds of characters who try to control everything in their environment. Nick’s disdainful description of the environment, people, and his encounters exposes the calamitous results of trying to control everything in one’s life. Throughout Fitzgerald's book, The Great Gatsby, the motif of control represents the characters’ failure to achieve their goals, further proving that individuals have limited control on their path to a fulfilling life.
Tom’s recurring gesture of grabbing and controlling Nick’s arm exposes his desire for social and physical superiority over Nick; however, Nick never feels intimidated or controlled by Tom, ultimately exposing that one cannot influence the other’s thoughts of them. Nick’s contemptuous thoughts about Tom arise when Tom says, “‘I’ve got a nice place here’...turning me around by one arm” (Fitzgerald 7). Tom, at the beginning of the novel, is pressuring Nick to be more aware of the beautiful house that Tom owns by turning Nick around by one arm. Although Tom is trying to force Nick to see that Tom is wealthier than him, Tom is expending lots of energy trying to
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In The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald portrays failure by using Gatsby to depict the personal struggles and unobtainable goals of people as a result of misfortune; this reflects Fitzgerald’s personal perspective that life is cruel and does not always go as planned.
Throughout F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, Tom's arrogant and domineering nature can be seen in nearly every interaction he has from the moment he is introduced to the last time he is seen by the story's narrator, Nick Caraway. Despite being a flat and static character, Tom is an oppressive, manipulative, and powerful force that plays an important role in The Great Gatsby.
Themes of hope, success, and wealth overpower The Great Gatsby, leaving the reader with a new way to look at the roaring twenties, showing that not everything was good in this era. F. Scott Fitzgerald creates the characters in this book to live and recreate past memories and relationships. This was evident with Gatsby and Daisy’s relationship, Tom and Daisy’s struggling marriage, and Gatsby expecting so much of Daisy and wanting her to be the person she once was. The theme of this novel is to acknowledge the past, but do not recreate and live in the past because then you will not be living in the present, taking advantage of new opportunities.
F. Scott Fitzgerald said, “Everybody’s youth is a dream, a form of chemical madness.” In The Great Gatsby, Jay Gatsby seems to be followed by an imminent force that only allows him to think of life in terms of how to recapture the past. Is this madness or extreme devotion? When Emily Dickinson wrote, “Much madness is divinest Sense-To a discerning eye,” she was saying that madness is almost always seen through a perspective. Think of Thomas Edison or William Shakespeare, whose ideas may have exhibited madness, but truly reflected dedication and commitment, showing that madness is usually justified. Whether it be love, ambition or passion that drove Gatsby, he was determined to follow his vision for the future to the very end no matter the
Ambitions are an integral aspect of human culture. They motivate us in a ceaseless pursuit of constant success. However, humans are truly not contempt with their successes, and perpetually dream for more success in a never-ending spiral of greed. Jay Gatsby’s character throughout F. Scott Fitzgerald’s masterpiece, The Great Gatsby, is an ideal epitome of human greed, or as we can refer to it, the American dream. Fitzgerald is able to foster a culture within the novel where dreams seem unreachable, despite the amount of hunger, or greed, one may possess in aim of fulfilling their desires. A sense of elitism is also present within the novel as Fitzgerald ably crafts astounding discrepancies within the social structure of the era fondly
True love is seen through a relationship of two people. Love exists when two people give all their trust, loyalty, and support to one another. Now imagine finding out all of the love and loyalty was false? Betraying a loved one can make someone capable of things they didn’t even know they were capable of. Betrayal is the breaking of a trust that produces moral and psychological conflict within a relationship amongst individuals. In The Great Gatsby, characters pursue in the action of having an affair and the result of betraying their loved ones. In the book, The Great Gatsby, the concept of true love is portrayed in a way that negatively affects the characters.
Nick Carraway experiences the feeling of being on the outside and looking into the inside many times throughout the novel. This is especially evident during his times at social events. One such example of the motif was when Nick was at the McKee’s daytime apartment party. After consuming a few drinks and listening to the frivolous conversations of Myrtle and Catherine, Nick takes a
In the texts Huck Finn, The Great Gatsby, and The Things They Carried, a major theme is the transformation of self, which happens through choice, through experience, or a combination of both. In The Great Gatsby, Jay makes the conscious choice to transform himself from the poor farmer boy, which he was born as, into an Oxford-educated rich millionaire, all so that he could win the heart of a girl. In Huck Finn, Huck ends up on a raft with a slave named Jim, and through the course of the whole story Huck experiences events that ultimately transform him from a young southern boy into a young adult knowing right from wrong by how he reacts to these experiences with Jim. Finally, in The Things They Carried, Jimmy Cross makes the conscious decision not necessarily to transform himself, but to take on responsibilities after the death of one of his men which in turn force change upon him. These responsibilities transform him.
F. Scott Fitzgerald, in the Great Gatsby, portrays the greed and dominance of the 1920’s upper class lifestyle through the novel’s antagonist, Tom Buchanan, who asserts himself into the high societal game of New York’s East Egg. Not only does he control gossip circulating, and disparages acquaintances, but he covers up any emotion with intimidation to raise his status; specifically, Tom willingly gains control of situations when he talks to his wife and friends, so he never has to be subordinate, advancing his own agenda.
Tracy Sabin once said, “Creating visual imagery is a state of mind. It involves the reproduction of what we see. But much more than that, it becomes an outlet to express feelings about what we experience.” Imagery is used in the story by using colors that symbolize traits of characters or scenery. Symbolism is used to find the true meanings of people in a story. Fitzgerald uses imagery of the two towns and symbolism of different colors to convey underlying messages about the qualities of the characters and the setting in The Great Gatsby. By encompassing symbols in the story, it reveals the true intentions or latent qualities of the characters.
The novel, “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald is set in the 1920s America, New York - a class society of money -, depicts a society which exists in a state of moral confusion and chaos, through the eyes of the narrator; Nick Carraway. Fitzgerald condemns the character’s tendencies in the novel to become greedy and materialistic in order to be successful, displayed throughout the chaos that arises as a result of the repercussion of these actions. This chaos continues to grow through the unfaithful marriages and illegal practices that exists extensively throughout the novel. Furthermore, Fitzgerald explores the prejudice discrimination between the newly rich and those with “old money”. Through all of this we come to see that during the “roaring 20s” was one of moral disorder and mayhem.
Tom and Daisy Buchanan disguise themselves as wealthy, upper-class people from the East, but, when their immorality threatens their reputation, they find they are no better than their heritage, which stems from the Midwest. When Tom and Daisy constantly try to position themselves as having a better reputation, it establishes that they do not have the status necessary to be part of eastern upper-class. Tom and Daisy both initiate affairs in which neither truly care for the person they are having the affair with. Nick witnesses “Tom Buchanan [break Myrtle's] nose with his open hand” (Fitzgerald 37). Tom uses Myrtle, his mistress, for sexual pleasure, but does not care for her well-being. Tom uses her because his marriage with Daisy was not made for love, but rather to increase their social standing. Daisy also has an affair with her former lover, Gatsby, and after observing his wealth, she develops a relationship with him. Both Tom and Daisy are unsatisfied with their relationship, but rather than tarnish their social status with divorce they choose infidelity. Tom and Daisy’s desperation to maintain their status causes their immorality. Furthermore, in many instances Tom insults Gatsby, especially to degrade his wealth and achievements. For example, Tom says, “I suppose the latest thing is to sit back and let Mr. Nobody from Nowhere make love to your wife” (130). Tom knows that he can only cause true damage by insulting Gatsby’s accomplishments. Tom desires to damage Daisy’s
The Great Gatsby is a well written novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald where a midwesterner named Nick Carraway gets lured into the lavish and elegant lifestyle of his enigmatic neighbor, Jay Gatsby. As the story unravels, Nick Carraway begins to see through Gatsby's suave facade, only to find a desperate, heartbroken and lonely man who just wanted to relive the past with his one and only desire. This sensational love story takes place during the well known“Roaring Twenties” in New York City. The genre of this thrilling and exciting novel is historical fiction.
In his song “All Falls Down,” mildly talented musician Kanye West emotionally raps, “We buy our way out of jail, but we can’t buy freedom.” Criticizing how those that are wealthy are able to control the world around them with their money, able to use it to get even “out of jail,” West asserts that such a reliance on wealth is ultimately restricting, as it cannot buy intangible things such as “freedom.” In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, the titular character, Jay Gatsby surrounds himself with wealth and extravagance in order to leave his previous life of dullness and banality and pursue an unrealistic and fragile love with Daisy. Though he is able to assume a new, affluent identity, he is ultimately unsuccessful in love, as his wealth disconnects him from reality, preventing him from realizing the impossibility of his goal. Nick Carraway, the narrator of the novel, maintains a sort of obsession with Gatsby, becoming sucked into his extravagant and wealthy lifestyle. However, by doing so, he begins to see the world in a new yet almost fantastical light, where even he is unable to comprehend the consequences of his actions and mannerisms. Under this, Fitzgerald contends that wealth and materialism are crutches that ultimately serve to skew and misrepresent surrounding reality.
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby is a story that has many different themes. Fitzgerald shows the themes that he uses through his character’s desires and actions. This novel has themes in it that we deal with in our everyday life. It has themes that deal with our personal lives and themes that deal with what’s right and what’s wrong. There are also themes that have to do with materialistic items that we deal desire on a daily basis. Fitzgerald focuses on the themes of corrupted love, immorality, and the American Dream in order to tell a story that is entertaining to his readers.