Wealth and Lack of Freedom in F. Scott Fitzgerald´s The Great Gatsby

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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. Without even meeting Gatsby, Nick delves into a world of delusion and carelessness that marks Gatsby’s party, emphasizing how just mere taste of extravagance and wealth can have such a
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