How Is Jay Gatsby Successful

566 Words3 Pages

The American Dream is the idea that all people in America, regardless of race, gender, nationality, or class, can be successful if they work hard enough. This term became more prominent in the early twentieth century as more immigrants came to America with the hope of a better life. These immigrants were willing to work hard in order to rise above their poverty and secure a future for themselves and their families. What is hard work? If a person becomes successful because they broke laws, have they truly fulfilled the American Dream? True success should be found through honest work, and because of this, Jay Gatsby is a manipulator of the American Dream. As a young man, Jay Gatsby is achieving the American Dream. “His parents were shiftless and unsuccessful farm people” (p 98). Gatsby despises being poor and longs for wealth. He creates a dream of the life he wants to have, and he never abandons this dream. For years he works hard and barely earns enough money to live, but he finds an opportunity for success …show more content…

Although his early grasp for wealth was honest work, his second chance is the opposite. “He and this Wolfsheim bought up a lot of side-street drug-stores here and in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter” (p 133). During the time that The Great Gatsby was written, there was a prohibition on alcohol. A way that some would make a large sum of money was by bootlegging, which is the making and selling of illegal items, particularly alcohol. This is where some of Gatsby’s wealth comes from, but much of his money comes from the stolen bonds that he sells. This is the Chicago business that is referred to throughout the novel. “... you see, I carry on a little business on the side… You’re selling bonds, aren’t you, old sport” (p 82)? Gatsby manipulated the law so he could have enough money to win Daisy’s heart instead of finding an honest job such as he had

Open Document