Success and fortune have been a downfall in the search for the American Dream. It has corrupted society’s ethics in all, family values and morals, and psychological well-being. In part to the fact that “The American Dream” and the way Americans wish to live can be unreachable by the average person. Society once was based on truth, passion, and liberty for all but now is a mere illusion, focusing on money, power and how to reach it; portraying materialism and wealth as the “American Dream” and self-actualization, as portrayed by Miller in Death of a Salesman. The American Dream came to mean fame and fortune, instead of a promise that shaped a nation.
Not only did it ruin the Wilson’s family but it also ruined the chances of Gatsby having a life of happiness. American dream is thought to bring happiness and success in life, but the novel, The Great Gatsby, says otherwise. Throughout Gatsby’s life the American dream fueled his passions but it lead to devastation and failures. Not only that, the social classes, ambitions, and materialism of the other characters show the corruption of the American dream. Overall, the American dream is depicted as corrupted and alludes the reader that it is an illusion that the society creates.
His dream of success transformed into a nightmare that ultimately led to his death. Gatsby and the Buchanans are proof that wealth does not equate to happiness or success. Gatsby’s romantic idealism is so great that he does not understand how wealth cannot bring happiness or love. Fitzgerald’s novel is great reminder to those with materialistic views about the detrimental effects the “American dream” can have on society.
Famine and a weak market tore humble families apart while a handful of men ruthlessly profited from their misery. As the Joad’s journey continues, Steinbeck clarifies the fatal flaw the owners possess “For the quality of owning freezes you forever into “I”, and cuts off forever from the “we”.”(Steinbeck 206) Capitalism itself is not morally wrong. The competitive spirit is an innate quality found in everyone. Without it, our will to survive would be nonexistent. However, there is a clear distinction between ambition and greed.
Although it seems he tried his best to be a good father, he was not always a faithful husband. On his many business trips to Bo... ... middle of paper ... ...ausing bitterness and disappointment. Relying on their imaginations instead of reality is something both Willy and Jay struggle with and is directly related to their ability of acquiring their unique versions of the American dream. The blatant disregard for honesty leads the protagonist into a world filled with bitter disappointment and artificiality. Thus, as a result the protagonists are susceptible to destruction Dishonesty leading to disappointment and tragedy is apparent in both literary works, "Death of a Salesman," and "The Great Gatsby."
Despite the differing views of masculinity, both shape their behaviour in order to survive. Willy is destroyed by his debilitating concept of masculinity because his fall is influenced by his notion of male success as reflected in the profession in which he lives and works. He is a tragic victim living in a disposable culture that would inevitably leave him behind. Stanley sees his imperilled masculinity defended by raping Blanche and boosting his own position. Even though he does not fall like Willy, tragically Stanley’s life will be tainted by his selfish attitude.
The American Dream in today's society is dead and is proven several times through plays, poetry, and essays. The perfect example of the dysfunctional American Dream is that of Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller. Willy innermost desires result in lies and extreme failure. James Lee says, "Arthur Miller's tragic drama is a probing portrait of the typical American psyche portraying an extreme craving for success and superior status in a world otherwise fruitless." In the business of sales there is room to either fail or succeed.
Shivani Shikha May25, 2014 English IV, period 5 Mr. Herberg Research Paper Assignment: Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller Entrapped by a sense of tremendous dissatisfaction and unrest spurring from a blind faith in the American Dream, Arthur Miller subtly castigates America for selling a deceptive myth fabricated around a capitalist materialism that was engendered by the aftermath of World War I. By spotlighting the most systemic weak links in the magnificently glorified American dream, Miller creates his own specific genre called the "American Tragedy. " In contrast to a more widely known Shakespearen Tragedy, "The American Tragedy" focuses theatrically on the downfall and the fatal flaw of a plebian individual, instead of a King or Queen bestowed with high prestige and renown. "Fascinated by realism and expressionism, Miller incorporated both elements to scrutinize the inner turmoil of an average man amidst the reality of events. "The American dream and its delusions are everywhere," (Helterman 92) and throughout the play, Miller points to the fact that reality pales in comparison to one's hopes and dreams.
Success, though, is an interesting concept, for it can entail many superficial qualities. Willy Loman, the tragic hero of the play Death of a Salesman, sees only the superficial qualities of this dream. He views success solely as likeability (linked with attractiveness), and wealth. Ignoring all methods to honorably achieve these, Arthur Miller demonstrates how Willy’s search for the superficial qualities of the American Dream lead him to his own despair. To begin, Willy’s methods of searching for likeability are erroneous.