Everyone has a dream of their desired future, they dream of the one thing that makes them happy that they do not have now. In Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Miller’s Death of a Salesman, Willy Loman and Gatsby are characters dominated by an American dream that destroyed them. Their dream comes from a fantasy past. These dreams were made outside from who they truly are. Gatsby tried to repeat his past, while Willy attempted to create a new past. The lack of control over their goals and dreams lead to their downfall at the end. The two novels show the various points of the American dream; either to pursuit of happiness, or to pursuit of material wealth. In the Great Gatsby and Death of a Salesman, many had pursued the American dream of material wealth and others could not. Tom and Daisy Buchanan are a married couple that seem to have everything they could possibly want and need. They had pursued the American dream of material wealth. Their lives were full of every materialistic object that one could imagine of, however they were very unhappy and seek to change their way of living. Tom drifts off to "forever seeking a little wistfully for the dramatic turbulence of some irrecoverable football game"(Fitzgerald 10) and he begins to read "deep books with long words in them"(17) just so that he could have a topic conversation with others. Tom is married to Daisy Buchanan; however he has an apartment in New York and has an affair with Myrtle Wilson there. Daisy Buchanan is one who is empty on the inside, and she demonstrates herself to the world as if she is oblivious to her husband’s affair with Myrtle. Daisy has no drive, ambition or desires that she wants to complete in her life; she is a characterless person, with a beating heart... ... middle of paper ... ...needs a little salary” (Miller 137). Willy needed more than just money to realize his dream. The struggle of human beings to achieve their goals by idealizing of an unrealistic goal which is all about the American dream is too far to reach leads the many downfalls. In conclusion, in Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Miller’s Death of a Salesman shows how dreams can be made and destroyed. By having the American Dream dominate one’s way of life can lead to death, just like Gatsby’s and Willy’s. This was due to the lack of control over their own lives. The novels shows the ideal life that is dreamt of and how many went to the extreme extent to achieve it, if it was not met they believed that they were not worthy of living, thinking that would be the best way out. The two novels show the American dream; either to pursuit of happiness, or to pursuit of material wealth.
In the novel The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald gives the reader a glimpse into the life of the high class during the 1920’s through the eyes of a man named Nick Carraway. Through the narrator's dealings with high society, Fitzgerald demonstrates how modern values have transformed the American dream's ideas into a scheme for materialistic power and he reveals how the world of high society lacks any sense of morals or consequence. In order to support his message, Fitzgerald presents the original aspects of the American dream along with its modern face to show that the wanted dream is now lost forever to the American people. Jay Gatsby had a dream and did everything he could to achieve it however in the end he failed to. This reveals that the American dream is not always a reality that can be obtained. Fitzgerald demonstrates how a dream can become corrupted by one’s focus on acquiring wealth and power through imagery, symbolism, and characterization.
The character of Gatsby and Fitzgerald’s commentary on the logical fallacies of the American Dream are closely intertwined, which is why Fitzgerald goes to such great lengths to separate the two. By distinguishing Gatsby from the flaws he possesses allows the reader to care for Gatsby, and the impact of his death all the more powerful when it finally occurs. By making Gatsby a victim of the American Dream rather than just the embodiment of it, Fitzgerald is able to convince his audience of the iniquity of the American Dream by making them mourn the life of the poor son-of-a-bitch
Fitzgerald makes a bold statement to a dreaming crowd. He argues through Gatsby’s example that as dreams become as “colossal” as imaginably possible, they will become increasingly more disconnected from their realities. Gatsby lives a life “lost to the old warm world, pa[ying] a high price for living too long with a single dream” (Fitzgerald 169). Fitzgerald argues that while dreams can serve as guidance towards an ultimate goal, they can also lead to a pitiful downfall. Gatsby lives with a dream that guides him towards recapturing his love for Daisy. However, the money that Gatsby needs to recapture Daisy blinds his love for her. He loses sight of the ultimate goal of his dreams, just as Fitzgerald must have seen in the hopeful eyes of ambitious young Americans. Poor, underprivileged people were developing dreams for better lives for themselves. But, in order to have better lives, they became too fixated on the means of getting there. Their dreams became blinded by money and became misguided from the ultimate goal of bettering oneself. Thus, through Gatsby’s tragic nature, Fitzgerald argues that the American Dream becomes ultimately unobtainable by the material means required in pursuit of the ultimate goal of a successful and prosperous
Despite her affection for Gatsby, Daisy still chooses to stay with Tom because of Gatsby’s shameful past and his connection to bootlegging and crimes, even though she’s also aware of Tom’s affair, which implies her lack of intellectualism. Tom and Daisy don’t care enough about their relationship emotionally to be bothered by indefinites, which establishes the lack of values they embody. Daisy is presented in a manner where she lacks morality and proceeds without conscience; she is selfish and doesn’t value others. Fitzgerald conveys wealth as being a corruption of morality and destroying the good values the American dream embodies though the characterization of Daisy.
The American dream originated when immigrants came to America searching for new opportunities and a better life. In the early 1900’s all people could do is dream; however, those dreams gave many different meanings to the phrase “American dream”, and for the most part, wealth and hard work play a very large role in the pursuit of “the dream”. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby, and Arthur Miller’s drama, Death of a Salesman, both protagonists, Jay Gatsby and Willy Loman, are convinced that the way to achieve a better life is by living the “American dream”. However, the dream does not end up successfully for these two characters. In fact, their ideals and hopes of rising to success cause their American dream to take a turn into a nightmare.
American Literature has been said to be timeless and relatable with its use of “American values and the American Dream of material success.” American Literature reflects the differences between the upper and lower class. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Arthur Miller’s Death of a Salesman contribute to the meaning of American literature, with the incorporation of the American dream and female characters. In the desperate chase for the American dream, one can become corrupted and egocentric. The aspects of the novel The Great Gatsby and the play Death of a Salesman demonstrate the slow emotional and social downfall of the protagonists Jay Gatsby and Willy Loman with reference to the American dream and female characters such as Daisy Buchanan and Linda Loman. Both protagonists illustrate the notion of individual sacrifice in order to pursue the American dream.
Scott Fitzgerald, author of The Great Gatsby, and Arthur Miller, author of Death of a Salesman, both tell the stories of men in the costly pursuit of the American dream. As a result of several conflicts, both external and internal, both characters experience an extinction of the one thing that they have set their sights on.... The American Dream.
The thesis of Kimberley Hearne’s essay “Fitzgerald’s Rendering of a Dream” is at the end of the first paragraph and reads “It is through the language itself, and the recurrent romantic imagery, that Fitzgerald offers up his critique and presents the dream for what it truly is: a mirage that entices us to keep moving forward even as we are ceaselessly borne back into the past (Fitzgerald 189).” Hearne’s essay provides information on the misconception of The American Dream that Fitzgerald conveys through “The Great Gatsby”. She provides countless evidence that expresses Fitzgerald’s view of The American Dream, and explains that Fitzgerald’s writing of the novel is to express to Americans what The American Dream truly is.
Tom and Daisy Buchanan, the rich couple, seem to have everything they could possibly want. Though their lives are full of anything you could imagine, they are unhappy and seek to change, Tom drifts on "forever seeking a little wistfully for the dramatic turbulence of some irrecoverable football game"(pg. 10) and reads "deep books with long words in them"(pg. 17) just so he has something to talk about. Even though Tom is married to Daisy he has an affair with Myrtle Wilson and has apartment with her in New York.. Daisy is an empty character, someone with hardly any convictions or desires. Even before her relationships with Tom or, Gatsby are seen, Daisy does nothing but sit around all day and wonder what to do with herself and her friend Jordan. She knows that Tom is having an affair, yet she doesn't leave him even when she hears about Gatsby loving her. Daisy lets Gatsby know that she too is in love with him but cant bring herself to tell Tom goodbye except when Gatsby forces her too. Even then, once Tom begs her to stay, even then Daisy forever leaves Gatsby for her old life of comfort. Daisy and Tom are perfect examples of wealth and prosperity, and the American Dream. Yet their lives are empty, and without purpose.
In ' 'Death of a Salesman ' ' by Arthur Miller and ' 'The Great Gatsby ' ' by F. Scott Fitzgerald we are presented with the tragedy of ruined idealism. Willy Loman 's and Jay Gatsby 's dreams are crushed because of their tremendous desire to be meaningful and significant. However, their social status, lineage, and ability to accept reality are incompatible with their dreams. Miller provides the facts that capitalism will not give a chance to ordinary people to get the American dream, and contrary Fitzgerald designates that achievement of the American dream will not bring happiness.
The American dream clouded both Willy and Gatsby’s mind. It changed their personality and changed the way they saw things. They were too set on what their heart wanted. You have to earn it, you can’t just expect to achieve it. Gatsby’s and Willy’s American dream made them clueless. “He presents it in Gatsby as a romantic baptism of desire for a reality that stubbornly remains out of his sight” (Bewley). They both ended without the lives they dreamt of, and without lives at all. The authors of these books are trying to show the American dream is not what its made out to be. It ruined their lives instead of them actually achieving
The American Dream has been a figure of hope for the American society for generations, seemingly ever since the declaration of independence by the founding fathers all those years ago. The central theme of ‘The Great Gatsby’ and ‘Death of a Salesman’ is the path towards a perfect life, driven by the American Dream. Both characters Gatsby and Willy have a hope, and both texts illustrate how it ‘prolongs their torment’, as neither achieve their goal in the end. Gatsby’s strive to become among the civil and well respected part of society is in vain for he will never be able to fully change himself, and his mistakes by trying to fulfill such a dream has him murdered in the end. Similarly, Willy’s desire to become a better salesman like his father
The American Dream is something we all strive for, whether it is subconscious or outright, most all of our major goals in life fall along the same path towards wealth and power. Known as a national ethos of the United States, the American Dream is said to give the people opportunities of prosperity and success no matter what economic or social background they came from. The story, “The Death of A Salesman” by Arthur Miller tells the story of Willy Loman and his failure to achieve the American dream ending in his ultimate downfall. He is a salesman, living in New York city in the late 1940s, with his wife and two sons, often finding himself unhappy and struggling to discover
Leonard Boswell once said, “The American Dream is one of success, home ownership, college education for one 's children, and have a secure job to provide these and other goals” (Boswell). This quote embodies the way Willy Loman, in Death of A Salesman by Arthur Miller, looks at life. He struggled through his whole life so he could feel as if he was truly successful. Willy wants everything that Boswell said plus he wants to be well liked, he wants the all important American Dream, and being better that those who surround him. These are the ways Willy Loman defined success and how he measured his life’s success.
People from all around the world have dreamed of coming to America and building a successful life for themselves. The "American Dream" is the idea that, through hard work and perseverance, the sky is the limit in terms of financial success and a reliable future. While everyone has a different interpretation of the "American Dream," some people use it as an excuse to justify their own greed and selfish desires. Two respected works of modern American literature, The Great Gatsby and Death of a Salesman, give us insight into how the individual interpretation and pursuit of the "American Dream" can produce tragic results.