The Great Gatsby: The Decline of The American Dream Essay

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The pursuit of the American Dream has been alive for generations. People from nations all over the world come to America for the chance to achieve this legendary dream of freedom, opportunity, and the “all American family”. However, in the 1920’s this dream began to take a different form. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s, The Great Gatsby, unfolds what the American Dream really meant during the roaring 20’s. The Great Gatsby tells a story of the affluent Jay Gatsby and his dream of attaining the love of the married Daisy Buchanan. In this novel, Gatsby’s dream of love is unmasked and reviled as a dream of materialistic things. Fitzgerald shows that each character truly glorifies only money, power, and social stature. During the 1920’s, these things …show more content…
Green represents money and a promise of hope. In chapter 1, Nick first sees Gatsby stretching his arms out towards a green light in the distance. Later it is discovered that this green light is at the end of the dock at Daisy’s house. Gatsby was reaching towards the light because he is really reaching for the hope of having a life with Daisy. Gatsby believed the only way to achieve this dream he has with Daisy was to become extremely wealthy. This hope of love through money only hurts Gatsby in the end. The people in the 20’s only had thoughts of the “good life”. This “good life” meant that money and power created happiness which in the end corrupted the American Dream.

In between West Egg and New York City, lies a dark place called the Valley of Ashes. This valley was where the ashes of the dead were sent to be dumped. Everything in this town was coved with ash including the people. The Valley of Ashes shows the moral decay of the 1920’s. There are two main events of immorality that occur in the Valley of Ashes. Tom Buchanan’s, Daisy’s husband, mistress, Myrtle, lives in the Valley of ashes. He visits there with Nick to pick her up. This shows that Tom’s value of pleasure is more important than morals. The other event is when Daisy kills Myrtle outside of her home in the valley. Daisy hits Myrtle dead on with Gatsby’s car and doesn’t stop. Daisy had no effect of killing another human being which shows that she has no

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