The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay

The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay

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The American Dream has been a part of United States history since the country began. One can presume that the saying “all men…are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness” from Thomas Jefferson’s “Declaration of Independence” is the first known American Dream (US 1776). Though this document says “all men”, this phrase did not include black people or white women. In 1776, it only meant the free, property-owning males that lived in America. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a famous literary piece that takes place in the 1920s in Long Island, which is the modern day New York. This novel gives the perfect impression on how the American Dream was obtained and how people act when they come into a great amount of money.
In The Great Gatsby, Gatsby’s parents are “shiftless and unsuccessful farm people”; yet, he made a life for himself and is now a wealthy man of West Egg (Fitzgerald 98). Even though he did not come from old money, Gatsby is a living embodiment of the 1920 American Dream. Materialism and wealth are the American Dreams in the novel. Everyone’s dream is to be rich, to be well-known, and to have more expensive things than the next person. The actual term “American Dream” became widespread in the 20th century by James Truslow Adams when he published his book Epic of America in 1931. Adams explains the American Dream as “that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement” (“James Truslow Adams Papers”). Ever since then, the term and theme of the “American Dream” have been used in multiple literary pieces and even in American culture. Th...


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...the bootlegging business and that is how he became rich in a short period of time; with the help of the inherited twenty-five thousand dollars from Dan Cody, the man changed Jay Gatz and created Jay Gatsby (Fitzgerald 100). However, both men came from a low-income family and despite not making their money the noble way, they made a name for themselves and everyone knew who they were.
F. Scott Fitzgerald writes about the dishonorable and less moral side of the American Dream. The novel gives off the impression that no one lives an ethical lifestyle in the 1920s. The morally unacceptable way of reaching the American Dream is still in effect today, albeit it’s not as common as it was back then it happens to this day. Modern-day America is still trying to grasp onto the American Dream although it appears that not many people achieve the American Dream in their lifetime.

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