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The Great Gatsby

  • Date Submitted: 01/28/2010 07:03 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 44.9 
  • Words: 1436
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Amidst the exceedingly prosperous decade of the 1920’s, traditional American lifestyles and principles were interjected by the new superficial and materialistic beliefs closely associated with “The Roaring Twenties.” Undoubtedly, the 1920’s were a decade of change. Deteriorating moralities and optimistic beliefs of overnight wealth replaced strict traditional views on religion, family structure, and work ethics. In an era of such high optimism, the pioneering spirit of the American Dream was revitalized. The nouveaux riches often clashed with the established wealth, as evident throughout F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald’s narrator, Nick Carraway, suddenly finds himself submerged in the paper-thin morals, and shallow values of upper-class New York after migrating from the Western interior. Throughout the novel, Nick is highly cynical of American society. Thus, The Great Gatsby is Fitzgerald’s means of criticizing the worsening family structure of American society, the newfound materialistic lifestyles of Americans, an American society governed by corruption, and ultimately, the paradox of the American Dream.

Fitzgerald’s characters and his own personal beliefs seem to suggest that he is mocking the weakness of American family life during the 1920’s. Throughout the novel, the most prominent of Fitzgerald’s characters are involved in extra marital relationships. The fact that these relationships are seen so often, clearly suggests that Fitzgerald is attempting to portray a weak bond between married couples. The weak relationship between the Buchanan couple as well as the Wilson couple are proof that. In addition, it should also be noted that Fitzgerald’s relationship with his own wife, Zelda, who The Great Gatsby is dedicated to, was highly romantic and severely strong. Fitzgerald had endured to attain his love for Zelda, and was faithful to her for much of his life. However, the fact that Fitzgerald creates characters who seem to contradict...


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