In The Great Gatsby, Is Gatsby Truly Great? Essay

In The Great Gatsby, Is Gatsby Truly Great? Essay

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  Is great Gatsby truly great? It seems so according to Nick Carraway, the narrator in the novel of “The Great Gatsby.” Nick has a moral background that allows him to judge Jay Gatsby accordingly. His descriptions did not only creates sympathy, but also made Gatsby, the outlaw bootlegger, somehow admirable. F. Scott Fitzgerald presented this ethical trick to expose people’s delusions about the American dream, and uses Nick to show sympathy for strivers.
  At the roaring ages of 1920s, the booming economy brings up the notion of American dream. People chase the American dream in pursuit of happiness while some of them believe that wealth will fix everything in life. For the same reason, they are wiling to idolize Gatsby. Chasers are inspired by achievers just like how Nick is fascinated by Gatsby before knowing him .Nick’s fascination turns into idolization after Gatsby invites Nick to his party. Nick describes Gatsby had “one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life(Ch.3).” Such description unifies the appearance of Gatsby with people’s expectation of a man who accomplished the American dream.
   The obsession with wealth often blinds people from the potential crisis. The crisis of having everything they worked and struggled for redefined if the reality fails them. Just like strivers who chase the American dream, Gatsby also spend his whole life in persue of his American dream, which Daisy was a major component of it. Gatsby’s “American dream” seems actualized when Daisy comments him “resemble the advertisement of the man(Ch7).” But Daisy eventually betrays Gatsby and went back to the arms of Tom. This is the final nail in the coffin, with Gatsby’s dr...


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... not tolerate Tom and Daisy and defines them as careless people who “smash[ed] up things and creatures and then retreat[ed] back into their money or their vast carelessness[...](Ch.9).” And at this point, Nick, who reserves all judgments, also makes a strong judgment by calling Tom, Daisy and the upper class they represent “a rotten crowd.” Later on, he states Gatsby “worth the hole damn bunch put together(Ch.8)”
  Is the great Gatsby truly Great? He could not be without the presence of Nick. A bootlegger who strives for extravagance and is attracted to a married women certainly do not worth our sympathy. Chasers of the American dream eagers only for wealth, but fail to appreciate the beauty of life, and that is where the great tragedy comes at.


Works Cited
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby: Complete and Unabridged. London: Wordsworth Editions, 2001. Print.

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