According to the Declaration of Independence, all men are guaranteed certain inalienable rights including life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. The founding fathers had engraved these principles into the American Constitution of 1787. As a result, all American citizens since the times of Jefferson have had the ability to seek happiness. One specific example is shown in F. Scot Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, in which Jay Gatsby, the main character, starts out with nothing and ends up wealthy. But his wealth never makes him truly happy, nor does his relationship with the woman that he loves. Rather, it is the struggle and pursuit of his dreams, for wealth and love, which create the person he is. Therefore, one can determine that the American Dream is the pursuit of happiness, not the attainment of happiness.
Life is a constant struggle; and this struggle exemplifies the American Dream instead of the fulfillment of one’s hopes and dreams. Gatsby himself is not symbolic of the American Dream; rather, it is the struggle and constant quest for his dreams. The purpose of this novel, The Great Gatsby, according to Marius Bewley was to criticize the flaws within the American society as revealed through Gatsby’s deficiencies. The article, “Scott Fitzgerald 's Criticism of America” having debatable views behind The Great Gatsby, makes a bold statement where the author states, “When, at the end, not even Gatsby can hide his recognition of the speciousness of his dream any longer, the discovery is made in universalizing terms that dissolve Daisy into the larger world she has stood for in Gatsby 's imagination” (Bewley 223-246). Throughout the course of the novel, Gatsby desperately attempts to ...
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...dreams, the end result is not necessarily always happiness.
Life with all of its struggles is not a crystal stair for which there are cracks and splinters making the journey upward all the more treacherous. Nonetheless, Gatsby persists with relentless spirit to relive the past and accomplish his dreams of wealth and love. Despite ultimately conquering those dreams, he never fully attains happiness even up to the moment he perishes. Nonetheless, through the life that he has lived, Gatsby most definitely embodies the American Dream. As, even despite constantly pursuing for happiness, in the end, he never actually attains this happiness.
*** Give quotes about Gatsby’s unhappiness
Bewley, Marius. “Scott Fitzgerald 's Criticism of America”. The Sewanee Review 62.2 (1954): 223–246. Web
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner, 2004. Print.
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