1) How Does Gatsby Represent the American Dream? and What Does the Novel Have to Say About the Condition of the Amrican Dream in 1920s?
Although "The Great Gatsby" is filled with multiple themes such as love, money, order, reality, illusion and immorality, no one would probably deny that the predominate one focuses on the American Dream and the downfall of those who attempt to reach its illusionary goals. The attempt to capture the American Dream is the central of this novel. This can be explained by how Gatsby came to get his fortune. By studying the process of how Gatsby tried to achieve his own so-called American Dream, we could have a better understanding of what American dream is all about, in those down-to-earth Americans' point of view. The characterization of Gatsby is a representative figure among Americans as he devoted his whole life to achieve his dream.
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Gatsby's destruction shows that those who try to maintain a lifestyle based purely on materialistic values are doomed by their self-delusion. Thus, by analyzing Fitzgerald's presentation, Gatsby's dream, the novel suggests, is also that of America, with its emphasis on the inherent goodness within nature, on healthy living, youth, vitality, romance, a dream of the East which has been dreamed up in the West. In this sense the novel becomes various things, an exploration of the American Dream, or perhaps a savage criticism of that dream. Gatsby, lured on by Daisy, who is no more than a symbol for him, pursues the Green Light, the dream of progress and material possessions, and is eventually destroyed.
Gatsby's personal dream symbolizes the larger American Dream where all have the opportunity to get what they want. For Gatsby, his American Deam is not material possessions in fact, although it may seem that way. He only comes into riches so that he can fulfill his true American Dream, Daisy. Gatsby does not rest until his American Dream is finally fulfilled. However, it never comes about and he ends up paying the ultimate price for it.
In the Great Gatsby, the idea of the American Dream still holds true. One thing never changes about the American Dream which is everyone desires something in life and everyone somehow strives to get it. Gatsby is a prime example of pursuing the American Dream.
Fitzgerald uses his