The Great Gatsby written by F Scott Fitzgerald in 1920s
illustrates the failure in striving for the American Dream. What
he failed to understand was that Daisy and he lived in two
different worlds, which because of social circumstance was
never allowed to intermingle. Daisy was a rich southern belle,
who became involved with Gatsby when they were still young
and later rejected him, because he was too poor to marry her
and in his place married Tom Buchanan, a rich abusive man
who ended up cheating on her. From the start they took him
for a fraud and thats all that he ended up being, because he
never understood the true meaning of the American Dream. He
mistook the meaning of success for being wealthy and as a
result he died having lived like one of the East Eggers, whom
he despised. Like the idle rich of East Egg he too accomplished
nothing. His evolution as a man amounted to nothing more
than a faded dream, because he never did accomplish what he
had set out to do, which was to win back the heart of his one
true love, Daisy. The prize for his success is similar to one who
has made a deal with the devil in the sense that the reward is
not worth the sacrifices made to attain it.

Gatsby is a man whose delusions of achieving the
American Dream is corrupted by the basis on which he strives
for it. American Dream consists of becoming rich through hard
work and determination through legal means. Gatsbys poor
background didnt afford him to take the straight and narrow
path through life, so instead he chose to make his money by
working for the mob. After leaving the Army he met this rich
drunk named Cody who employed him as a worker on his boat.

He ended up befriending Cody in hopes of inheriting his
fortune. He never inherited his fortune, but instead from this
experience he learned that drinking could ruin a mans dream
of success. From this point in his history he becomes clouded
in an air of mystery leaving the reader to only speculate how
he became involved with the mob. According to his neighbors
people are in and out of his house at all hours of the day. And
sometimes some notorious mobsters were spotted gathered
around his place in what were thought to be mob meetings. He
was a notorious figure linked to scandals as the 1913 World
Series and the numerous drugs stores/ bootlegging shop,
which afforded him the mansion of West Egg. The main
character of this story, Jay Gatsby whose rags to riches history
brings with him much scrutiny that revealed the truth behind
his rise to success. His sudden move to West Egg where no one
knew him caused much suspicion amongst his well to do
neighbors. The contradiction in the lies that he told made East
Eggers further their suspicion; along with the fact that such
obscure details about his tenure at Oxford were left to the
imagination and his overuse of the phrase Old Sport made
him look ridiculous. Rumors about Gatsbys notorious past
hovered over his parties like a dark cloud hindering his social
progress to make friends with his neighbors. One of Gatsbys
many contradictions was that he read all the books in his study
when according to the idle drunk were still uncut. His overuse
the word old sport is used by Tom at the end of the book in
his confrontation with Gatsby to show his falseness. He tried to
hide his poor past to try to be accepted by the East Egg society
but didnt work and his stint at illegal work costed him his
credibility to ever prove his legitimacy as a businessman. The
noble intentions of his heart are not buffered by his actions,
Gatsby truly understands the meaning of the American
Dream, because he only wants happiness. Gatsbys noble goal
at recapturing his true love is much more worthy than of each
of the other characters. Each of the main characters in this
story can be categorized in two categories, the careless rich of
East Egg and the hardworking dreamers of the West Egg.

Gatsbys route to attain happiness was purposeful while the
wealthy are not. Gatsby used money to attain happiness while
the rich used money to become more unsatisfied. Nick paints a
distinct picture of these two types of people in his narration
throughout the story, which he himself has a hard time
grasping since he sees himself slowly falling into the Careless
East Egg Group, whom he disliked. The characters are
described in such great detail in relation to Gatsby it suggests
Gatsbys superiority amongst all others in their futile attempt
at the American Dream. The people of the East Egg live
carelessly as was shown when Daisy after coming home from
the city indiscriminately ran over Myrtle without a second
thought as though she only saw Myrtle as a second class road
block and not connect her to being the critical piece that was
running her marriage. This showed her overwhelming
confidence that no matter how hard Myrtle tried to woo Tom
that she would never become his wife for she knew that Myrtle
was not rich and lacked the social grace which she had brought
up in. Tom as well treats his mistress just as bad as was shown
when on their trip with Myrtle. He slapped her for merely
making fun of his wife. This shows a deep contradiction of the
values of the rich. Although they do such bad things they are
still able to separate the good from the bad and seem to have
no problem living that lie. This lie that the rich live by is that
they are never happy with how they live. They always try to
find excitement in their life, by either doing a dangerous
activity or by buying something extravagant which they have
no need for. The excitement that Tom got by cheating on his
wife with Myrtle caused him to treasure Daisy much more. Its
this contradiction, which Gatsby and Nick despise as was
shown in the confrontation between Gatsby and Tom at the
hotel. Gatsby the humble man whose poor background taught
him to realize the importance of the small things in life sought
something more valuable than just mere thrills, but rather he
sought true love in the form of one Daisy Buchanan. He
equated happiness with Love and that is why he became rich.

This pursuit is much more noble than that undertaken by either
Tom or Daisy Buchanan, for they used their money to do bad
things and to hurt other people while the only person Gatsby
ended up hurting was himself. His death bears a grave
remembrance of true sacrifice really means. Gatsby showed he
didnt need his money and for his cause was directly for Daisy
only when the drunk idler of the library shown to Nick that all
of Gatsbys books are still uncut. Gatsby told Nick that he had
read all those books but was clearly a lie after the revelation.

Gatsby knew this and didnt care for it was his love for Daisy
that blinded him of the embarrassment of his contradictions.

He braved embarrassment in order to win back Daisy and it is
because of this that his intentions are shown to be clearly
The pursuit of Daisys love shows Gatsbys determination
toward a certain ideal. Working hard towards a goal usually
produces favorable results. In the case of Gatsby, where social
class plays a major role in him being rejected by Daisy his
ignorance of social class distinction is best displayed. The same
mentality he used to become rich was the same one he used to
try to win her back. Gatsby, the main character in this story, is
by all respects a very ambitious, hard working dreamer whose
spirit becomes crushed when his dreams meet reality. During
the story, Nick realizes that Gatsby is too is driven by his
overwhelming obsession to recapture Daisy. Progressively,
Nick begins to side with Gatsby in his quest for Daisys heart.

Gatsby’s whole efforts in this book are focused on trying to
bring him and Daisy back to the point of time before he joined
the army except this time he has enough money for her. Gatsby
says it himself on page 111, Can’t repeat the past? Why of
course you can! The notion that one can attain something
once lost can only be described as childish. During the
transition from childhood to adulthood brings with such life
changing moments as puberty and love loss. These were made
to mature us physically, mentally, emotionally, and to make
one capable of dealing with the outside world. Gatsby has
shown he is a child when it comes to love and that is the why
his relationship with Daisy was bound to fail. From the onset of
the story they are two different places in their life mentally and
emotionally. She already had come to terms with the fact that
show will never be able to rekindle the same love which once
burned hot for Gatsby and now goals to strengthen her
relationship with Tom. These childish characteristics, which
Gatsby exhibits adds to his likeability and vulnerability. The
ideal that love can with stand any type of pressure to live on is
a pipedream, which Gatsby paid dearly for.
The Green Light at the end of Daisys dock symbolizes the
unreachable American Dream, because the requirements of
attaining it is to sell out ones self respect and morals. From the
start they took him for a fraud and thats all that he ended up
being, because he never understood the true meaning of the
American Dream. He mistook the meaning of success for being
wealthy and as a result he died having lived like one of the
East Eggers, whom he despised. Like the idle rich of East Egg
he too accomplished nothing. His evolution as a man amounted
to nothing more than a faded dream, because he never did
accomplish what he had set out to do, which was to win back
the heart of his one true love, Daisy. The prize for his success
is similar to one who has made a deal with the devil in the
sense that the reward is not worth the sacrifices made to
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