After a traumatic, horrible event takes place, there are often further issues as to who will take the blame for it or who will sacrifice themselves for the blame. After an automobile hits and kills Myrtle Wilson in The Great Gatsby, her husband George is ravenous in his attempts to find her murderer. Although it is clear that Daisy Buchanan drove the car that killed Myrtle, George shoots Gatsby due to the fact that Tom Buchanan leads him into thinking Gatsby is the driver. When Nick Carraway confronts Tom about this, Tom nonchalantly replies, “I told [George] the truth,” (Fitzgerald, 2000) indicating full well that he knew George would get rid of Gatsby. Instead of taking responsibility for the calamity and saving Gatsby (whom Daisy supposedly “loves”), Tom and Daisy act out of self-interest and “retreat back into their money… and let other people clean up the mess they had made…” (Fitzgerald, 2000.) On the o...
... middle of paper ...
... barn where the family finds refuge. Conversely to The Great Gatsby, the individuals in The Grapes of Wrath persevere and show selflessness towards others in the hardest of times.
In conclusion, when it comes to selfishness and selflessness, these two novels could not be more different. In The Great Gatsby, many decisions the characters make often have egocentric, greedy motives, while in The Grapes of Wrath the main characters are usually committing altruistic, selfless acts no matter how tough the circumstances are. Through demonstrations of self-sacrifice for others, greed, and the ability to persevere harsh times and still care for others, these two novels prove to be highly contrasting.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. (2000). The great gatsby. London, England: Penguin Classics.
Steinbeck, J. (2006). The grapes of wrath. New York, NY: Penguin Books.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- From a young age, our parents teach us to be grateful for what we have. However, as human beings and Americans, we * find it difficult to be content with what we consider “less.” Much of the American Dream revolves around success, and in general, the more you have, whether it is money, possessions, or relationships, the more successful you are. The American value of achievement often results in selfishness, once described by William E. Gladstone as “the greatest curse of the human race” (William E.... [tags: The Great Gatsby, The Grapes of Wrath]
1118 words (3.2 pages)
- ... In one encounter, Hester exposes Dimmesdale as “broken down by long and exquisite suffering” (The Scarlet Letter, pg. 181), rendering the ministers formerly sanctified character “darkened and confused by the very remorse which harrowed it”(181). Dimmesdale’s “suffering” and “remorse”, symbolize how his initial decision to suppress his sin has degraded his integrity and obscured his moral compass, preventing his return to a path of moral righteousness. Reluctant to tarnish their seemingly faultless reputations, both Goodman Brown and Dimmesdale try to justify their actions, rather than publicly confessing to their sin.... [tags: ideal lifestyle, human nature, hawthorne]
1298 words (3.7 pages)
- St. Paul states, “For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known” (Holy Bible: Placed by the Gideons, 1 Corinthians 13:12). Facing a mirror reveals one’s true self because looking at a reflection is looking into one’s soul. It is self-realization that shows the selfish or selfless love resting within one’s heart. For many centuries and still today, love is described as one of the best feelings on earth, a feeling that has brought about joy, as well as heartbreak.... [tags: CS Lewis, The Four Loves, Literature]
1737 words (5 pages)
- In Lois Lowry’s novel, “The Giver”, the characters with light colored eyes all have a rare gift; they see the community in a different way. Once Jonas, the main character, becomes the newest Receiver of Memory, he is told that only he and the Giver notice those differences. Jonas, uses the memories The Giver transmits to him to discover the differences in the community and Elsewhere. He learns about past experiences that have been transmitted to him; the newest Receiver of Memory. Jonas wants to leave the community to discover the truth about Elsewhere and what is there.... [tags: community, modern society]
716 words (2 pages)
- Money— sweeter than honey but oh so destructive. It facilitates a man’s life, while a lack of it imprisons him in the streets of penury. It raises his social status, while an absence of it leaves him unnoticed. It gives him an aura of superiority and importance among others, while a deficiency of it makes him worthless in society’s eyes. Considering these two roads, most do not take more than a second to decide to chase riches. Blinded by the self-destructive American dream of “Marie-Antoinette music-rooms and Restoration salons” and “toilet sets of pure dull gold” most murder their morals and harm others in the process (Fitzgerald 5.91).... [tags: the great gatsby, fitzgerald]
990 words (2.8 pages)
- Altruism: Selfless or Selfish. "We are all here on earth to help others. What I can't figure out is what the others are here for." --W. H. Auden (1) Whether we are here to help others is a question I've often asked myself, and a question I will not be able to answer while I am still here on earth. Perhaps before I even consider that question, however, I should wonder whether we even can be here to help others: is selflessness really possible. Or is "altruism" merely doing things for others in order to feel good about ourselves.... [tags: Biology Essays Research Papers]
1620 words (4.6 pages)
- Aqsa Khalil Ms. Aquilina ENG 3U 13 April 2015 Selfish Desires vs. Selfless Acts: Spiritual Leadership in The Crucible A true spiritual leader follows the example of God. In the allegory, The Crucible by Arthur Miller, Elizabeth Proctor and Reverend Parris’ actions prove that ordination does not necessarily mean sound spiritual leadership. Miller uses the backdrop of the 1692 witch hunts to criticize the flawed society of Puritanism. The play is also a critique of McCarthyism in the United States of America which occurred in the 1950’s.... [tags: The Crucible, Salem witch trials]
1861 words (5.3 pages)
- Themes: People often give up everything that have for others, not because they have a lot to give, but because they know what it feels like to have nothing. Quote: “She looked at Rose of Sharon huddled in the comfort. Ma’s eyes passed Rose of Sharon’s eyes passed Rose of Sharon’s eyes and then came back to them. And the two women looked deep into each other” (454). These were the actions taken before Rose of Sharon helps the starving stranger in the barn by feeding him her breast milk. Even though the Joads have never met this man, they know what it is like to be hungry and to suffer.... [tags: The Grapes of Wrath]
988 words (2.8 pages)
- ... The fact that his wife is cheating on him makes him sick because she is everything to him. Since his wife is having an affair, Winston feels the desire to have someone to comfort him, and reverts to religion by believing Eckleburg’s eyes are those of God. Doctor T. J. Eckleburg’s eyes help to express how the emptiness of the American dream in the 1920’s is through money. His eyes on the billboard are described as “blue and gigantic −− their retinas are one yard high. They look out of no face but, instead, from a pair of enormous yellow spectacles” which symbolize the characters and their values (27).... [tags: money, materialism, sacrifice]
1022 words (2.9 pages)
- The Christian Ideals in The Grapes of Wrath In Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath one of the themes discussed is the idea of Christian goodness exhibited in the Joads and other migrant workers. Those in the book representing this * "[eat] together with glad and sincere hearts." This type of selfless sharing is a Christian concept of good fellowship. Particularly, Ma shows her caring towards others from the beginning and urges others to do the same. Jim Casy, while struggling with the orthodox view of Christianity, still displays a general concern for his fellow man.... [tags: The Grapes of Wrath John Steinbeck]
850 words (2.4 pages)