Compare And Contrast The Sonnets And The Great Gatsby

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At first glance, the connection between Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “Sonnets from the Portuguese” and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby is not evident. However, both the “Sonnets” and Gatsby share strong themes of the pursuit of love as an ideal, but the context of each text dictates a very different perspective on the necessity of a religious ideal. Browning’s “Sonnets” explore the deep depths of love and the powerful need for religion in her life in a Victorian context, whereas Fitzgerald’s Gatsby explores the corruption of the ideal of love and the absence of the necessity to have religion in the context of the Jazz Age. By juxtaposing each text’s version of love and what encapsulates a relationship, the reader is able to contrast the…show more content…
The force of love’s power for Browning is evident in the word “quailed”. Browning’s pursuit of love’s ideal is the opposite of what the pursuit of love’s ideal is in Gatsby. Gatsby and Daisy’s love is not innocent and pure but rather a love riddled with the obsession of money and materialistic items. Fitzgerald’s representation of the pursuit of love as an ideal is shown through his characterization of Jay Gatsby, a wealthy ‘bootlegger’ who pursues Daisy as part of fulfilling the American Dream. Daisy is portrayed as a selfish and materialistic woman, reflecting the modern woman of the ‘20s. Her view of love is devoid of deep attachment and is based on temperamental infatuation. To Gatsby the prospect of Daisy being loved by so many excited him, “It excited him, too that many men had already loved Daisy – It increased her value in his eyes.” The use of commercial terminology establishes the idea that though Gatsby may have loved Daisy, he needed to ‘buy’ her love. He saw Daisy as a prized possession rather than an equal partner in their love. Gatsby’s love for

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