Gordan, an esteemed English teacher, once said “Literature isLife”. I had not been able to grasp the reality of those words until I readThe Great Gatsby . After reading The Great Gatsby, I understand that literatureis written through inspiration from our daily lives. In this novel, F.
ScottFitzgerald portrays the themes of morality and life versus illusion. Through hisexcellent writing techniques, Fitzgerald reduces most of the characters of thenovel as seemingly obsessed with material possessions, petty, and selfish. Theses characterizations are portrayed because of the realness of human nature. Fitzgerald uses contrasting morals and values of the characters to show the truedisparity in human nature. Nick’s characteristics are completely incompatiblewith Tom’s. Since Nick has a strong foundation and is honest, he is thus veryfaithful.Order now
His faithfulness and loyalty is apparent when he attends and organizesGatsby’s funeral. On the other hand, Tom is unfaithful and dishonest. He isdishonest with Daisy and Myrtle. He also shows his unfaithfulness when he is notpresent at the birth of his daughter. In addition, Fitzgerald also uses Tom andGatsby to show the sentimental disparity. Gatsby is a dreamer and a romanticman, who by following his dreams, went from rags to riches.
He is proud of thefact that he has been able to accumulate his wealth independently, despite thefact that it is hinted that much of his money was earned illegally. Tom, on theother hand, is a realist and a straightforward man. He does not dream, as Gatsbydoes; he merely acts on his instincts. He has not earned his great wealth: hehas inherited it. In spite of the fact, that all of the main characters in TheGreat Gatsby have very different personalities; they are however all affected bymoney.
Some characters, like Gatsby and Tom Buchanan, have money, and are veryexpressive with it. Other characters, such as Myrtle, lust for money. Essentially being of the middle class, Myrtle’s attraction to Tom is not basedon love or affection. Rather, Tom represents something that Myrtle has never had: endless wealth; and with this Myrtle correlates happiness.
Fitzgerald uses thelust for money in his novel because it is one thing that almost everybody in theworld lusts for. He also tries to use the prejudices against rich as beingflamboyant and superficial to create a contempt against Tom Buchanan and Daisy. However, these prejudices might have some truth or reality to them as Fitzgeraldshows it in the end through Nick’s judgment. Fitzgerald also adds a dash ofreality to his novel when Gatsby doesn’t achieve his dream of winning Daisyback from Tom. In this case, the strong, bullying character of Tom representsreality, and with his powerful nature he easily squashes any hopes that Gatsbymay have of a relationship with Daisy.
This shows that sometimes dreams don’tcome true, as opposed to the fairy tale version of ” . . . . and they livedhappily everafter”. Although, Fitzgerald may despise all that the Americandream stands for, he more importantly illustrates that it is not always easy toobtain it.
The novel ends with the death of Gatsby. This may seem surprising tothe reader, as Fitzgerald seems to have built Gatsby up as being one of the trueheroes of the novel. However, Fitzgerald understands that reality is often veryharsh to dreamers, a central quality in Gatsby’s character. The death of Gatsby,and the unaffected life of Tom after both Gatsby’s and Myrtle’s death istestament to the fact that illusion is often shattered when confronted withreality. Rather than this fact detracting from Gatsby’s character; the reader,however, supports the image of Gatsby all the more: a man who has died while inpursuit of something worthy.
This alternative is far better than any othersolutions. If Gatsby had not died, then he would have been desperate anddesolute. In addition, Tom would have had the upper hand and would have onlyenlarged his own ego. Fitzgerald ends the novel with another reality. He showsthat Gatsby’s life had no worth if measured with how many real”friends” he had.
In the end, Gatsby died without having the lust ofhis life. In the end, people who stuck by him where the ones that he used andabandoned. His friendship with Nick was only based on the fact that Nick wasDaisy’s cousin. He also abandoned his father and the family name for the lustfor the money. In conclusion, life is short and ” .
. . you can’t liveforever!”