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The Roles Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby

Good Essays
It's 1920, there are large parties with men and women with extravagant, risque outfits and loud, upbeat music. People of all colors are associating at parties, women are smoking and drinking. These extravagant parties are what Jay Gatsby is known for. These lavish parties are during the 1920s, also known as the “Roaring 20s”, which is a time of political and social change. The 1920s is a period of jazz, economic boom, and the American Dream. Many people think they can achieve the American Dream, they think anyone regardless of their race, class, and gender can become very successful in America if they work hard for it. This “American dream” is all a myth, America has a social hierarchy and social classes and is shown in the novel, The…show more content…
Gatsby transformed himself into a new man, from James Gatz to Jay Gatsby. He transitions from a poor midwestern farmer boy from North Dakota then into a rich man living in West Egg. Alluding back to the last paragraph of the novel, Nick states, “...So we beat on boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.” This last line of the novel is saying people say they are going to move on from the past, but they will never move on because they will always be stuck in the past. This was the same scenario for Gatsby, because he kept going back to Daisy and his past. He met Daisy in Louisville and he instantly fell in love with her, but he has to leave for war. She promised him she would wait for him, but during that course of time she married Tom Buchanan. This situation happened exactly to Fitzgerald because he once was very poor, but he became rich and the same situation also happened to him about finding the girl of his dreams. Gatsby tells Nick, “‘Can’t repeat the past?’ He cried incredulously. ‘Why of course you can!’” (110). Gatsby wants to go back to the past where he originally met Daisy and would marry her. He thinks because she loved him once that she will love him again and will leave Tom, but Daisy is not the same girl as she was five years ago. People change, things change, and with time surrounds change, which makes it impossible to go back to the way things were before. Time never stops or rewinds and people cannot revisit the past. It is like a boat going against the current because it is hard and rough to go against it. Instead you have to go away from the current in order to move forward, just like Nick said in the last paragraph. Gatsby is thinking unrealistically and needs to move forward, but he will not. Gatsby told Nick the truths of his past, Nick narrates, “He talked a lot about the past, and I gathered that he wanted