Essay about This Side of Paradise and The Great Gatsby

Essay about This Side of Paradise and The Great Gatsby

Length: 1970 words (5.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s writings largely focus on the American aristocracy during the 1920s. The ‘20s became alternatively known as “the Jazz Age,” a term coined by Fitzgerald with connotations encompassing the prosperity, frivolity, and decadence of the upper class. The atmosphere and mindset of lavish excess are preserved in the plots and characters of Fitzgerald’s writings. Although Fitzgerald’s protagonists are wealthy, there is a noticeable distinction between those who come from “old money” and those who are considered “new money”. Amory Blaine, of This Side of Paradise, and Jay Gatsby, of The Great Gatsby, exemplify this difference.

Fitzgerald’s novels explore the opulent lifestyle of the upper class, and the resulting desire of outsiders to belong. Jay Gatsby is one such character who makes his way to the fringes of the upper class. It seems appropriate that Gatsby creates a fraudulent identity for himself in order to belong to a world characterized by phoniness, in which “women who never knew each other’s names“ (The Great Gatsby 44) pretend to be the best of friends. Although Gatsby creates a fake identity, it is the people of the upper class, such as Amory, who are truly phony, for they understand and facilitate the superficiality of their world.

Amory and Gatsby develop their identities by embracing and rejecting, respectively, their families. Amory wholeheartedly accepts the privileged world he is born into and the influence of his mother, Beatrice. Wealthy and supercilious, Beatrice molds Amory into a young aristocrat. Amory learns behavior such as “biting acquiescent bell-boys in the Waldorf, outgrowing a natural repugnance to chamber music and symphonies, and deriving a highly specialized edu...

... middle of paper ...

... the factor that determines Amory’s success at employing deception and Gatsby’s failure.

Works Cited

Bewley, Marius. “On the Two Levels of Daisy Buchanan.” F. Scott Fitzgerald: Comprehensive Research and Study Guide. United States of America: Chelsea
House Publishers, 2000. Print.

Bloom, Harold. “Biography of F. Scott Fitzgerald.” F. Scott Fitzgerald: Comprehensive Research and Study Guide. United States of America: Chelsea House Publishers, 2000. Print.

Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner, 2003. Print.

Fitzgerald, F. Scott. This Side of Paradise. New York: Scribner, 1960. Print.

Fitzgerald, F. Scott. “Winter Dreams.” Metropolitan Magazine. December 1922.

Frasner, Keath. “On a ‘Man’s Book’.” F. Scott Fitzgerald: Comprehensive Research and Study Guide. United States of America: Chelsea House Publishers, 2000. Print.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The American Dream in The Great Gatsby and This Side of Paradise Essay

- Frances Scott Fitzgerald was born on September 24th, 1896 in St. Paul Minnesota and died of a heart attack in an apartment in Hollywood on December 21st, 1940. Throughout his career, Fitzgerald wrote many works, traveled the world, and served in the United States Army. F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote mostly short stories but became famous because of his novel This Side of Paradise and became even more famous because of The Great Gatsby which was released in 1925. The time period in which Fitzgerald lived played an extensive role in his work....   [tags: American Dream Essays]

Powerful Essays
1372 words (3.9 pages)

The Great Gatsby Research Report Essay

- I. Introduction In 1896 F. Scott Fitzgerald was born in St. Paul, Minnesota. After growing up in Minnesota he moved to start a career and marry Zelda, the girl he loved. He published his first novel, This Side of Paradise, in 1920; the novel was a success and Fitzgerald quickly became one of the most famous young writers of the time. “F. Scott Fitzgerald eagerly embraced his newly minted celebrity status and embarked on an extravagant lifestyle that earned him a reputation as a playboy and hindered his reputation as a serious literary writer”(F....   [tags: The Great Gatsby]

Powerful Essays
1251 words (3.6 pages)

Essay about The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald

- Since the beginning of time, man has written himself into history. Whether it was on cave walls, or in scripts, men have wanted to leave behind a legacy. One of the most well known men is author F. Scott Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald had always wanted to write the greatest American novel- and so he created the Great Gatsby. Although it is not the greatest American novel, it is studied by high schools and has several movie adaptions. However, he had to take a great journey to create this story about Jay Gatsby and his endless hope....   [tags: literary analysis, the great gatsby]

Powerful Essays
1143 words (3.3 pages)

F. Scott's Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby Essay

- They say that art imitates life…or life imitates art. Either one is somewhat hard to believe. A few brushes of a paintbrush on a canvas, a mirror image on the film of a camera, or even a special combination of the 26 letters of the alphabet onto a page—imitating life. Of course, people can paint life, or take pictures of life, and even write about life. It’s a bit more obvious that the concept of life imitating art is a bit harder to believe. But you can learn from art—especially from the literary art....   [tags: Literary Analysis, Great Gatsby, Biography]

Powerful Essays
1550 words (4.4 pages)

The Great Gatsby Essay

- The Great Gatsby The Great Gatsby belongs to what Harold Bloom tags the “tomb” of literary archetypes, a family of fiction that espouses every facet of the expressive use of language (everything from Shakespeare’s plays to Dickens’ prose). As a participant in this tomb, The Great Gatsby has adopted a convenient persona in the world of twentieth century literature as “the great American novel,” a work that embodies the American thematic ideals of the self-made man, the great American character—Jay Gatsby....   [tags: Great Gatsby Fitzgerald Papers]

Powerful Essays
2601 words (7.4 pages)

The Great Gatsby Essay

- I. Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald, born in St. Paul, Minnesota, grew up in an upper-middle class family where he enjoyed the traditions of the upper classes, but not the financial ability to uphold those practices. Fitzgerald acquired his fame, almost overnight, with the publication of his first book, This Side of Paradise, in 1920. His extensive career began with the writing of stories for mass-circulation magazines, such as The Saturday Evening Post. That same year, he married Zelda Sayre, who later became one his major influences on his writing, along with literature, Princeton, and alcohol....   [tags: The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald]

Free Essays
2131 words (6.1 pages)

gatjay Failure of Jay Gatsby in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

- Failure of Jay Gatsby of The Great Gatsby A society naturally breaks up into various social groups over time. Members of lower statuses constantly suppose that their problems will be resolved if they gain enough wealth to reach the upper class. Many interpret the American Dream as being this passage to high social status and, once reaching that point, not having to concern about money at all. Though, the American Dream involves more than the social and economic standings of an individual....   [tags: Great Gatsby Essays]

Free Essays
1200 words (3.4 pages)

Sacrifices in The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay example

- The truth was that Jay Gatsby of West Egg, Long Island, sprang from his platonic conception of himself. He was a son of God-- a phrase which, if it means anything, means just that-- and he must be about His Father's business, the service of a vast, vulgar, and meretricious beauty. So he invented just the sort of Jay Gatsby that a seventeen-year-old boy would be likely to invent, and to this conception he was faithful to the end (99). James Gatz was already "about his Father's business" when he carefully sketched out a schedule for self improvement on the back of his "Hopalong Cassidy" book....   [tags: The Great Gatsby Essays]

Powerful Essays
1770 words (5.1 pages)

Symbolisms in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald Essay

- ... In the novel, Nick describes him as having “an extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness such I have never found in any other person and which is not likely I shall ever find again” (Fitzgerald 2).He kept believing and fighting for his dreams to the very end, even after it became clear that Daisy would not leave Tom to stay with him. This persistence in following his dream made Gatsby an inspirational character for many people that make the green light their own. For them, it does not only represent Gatsby's dreams, but also their dreams....   [tags: the green light, great depression]

Powerful Essays
832 words (2.4 pages)

The Great Gatsby Essay

- Francis Scott Fitzgerald grew up in St. Paul, Minnesota in a middle class family where he was exposed to the lavish of the upper-class, but he did not have the financial means to make that lifestyle his own. Fitzgerald became famous overnight with the publication of his first work, This Side of Paradise, published 1920. His long writing career commenced with his position as a writer for The Saturday Evening Post. Fitzgerald, in 1924, wrote The Great Gatsby, a novel detailing the American Dream. The setting of this novel was in Fitzgerald's own time; as such the reader sees Fitzgerald’s own views on his world....   [tags: American Literature]

Powerful Essays
1169 words (3.3 pages)