Materialism Great Gatsby

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Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald came to be known as one of the most renowned people in American literature. Fitzgerald and his wife, Zelda lived the lavish lifestyle of the 1920s, known as the Jazz Age, which was characterized as a period of vast economic prosperity and revival for the American Economy. Fitzgerald devoted his whole life, wealth, and even wrote a book dedicated to Zelda known as The Great Gatsby. In the book The Great Gatsby, a poor army soldier named Jay Gatz works hard to please an upper class girl named Daisy gaining his wealth virtually overnight, in an illegal way, and promising the lavish lifestyle that she hoped to have similar to the love life Fitzgerald faced. The 1920s paved way for a new trend in the American
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The quest for gaining wealth intertwines with the complicated question as to whether an individual is able to gain what he or she truly desires. One way the reader sees this theme reflect through The Great Gatsby is when Myrtle tries to use Tom’s generosity to gain items that she normally would not be able to get. “I want to get ones of these dogs,’ she said earnestly. ‘I want to get one for the apartment. They’re nice to have-a dog.’” (Fitzgerald 27). This quote resonates the reason as to why Myrtle is asking for all of these material things. Tom believes that through wealth and objects he can gain Myrtle’s love and shy her away from George Wilson. In reality, however, Myrtle is simply trying to elevate her social status and portray herself as a rich aristocrat through her affair with Tom, a life that would be near impossible with her marriage with George Wilson. Another relationship that reflects the theme of materialism in the story would be that of Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan. After years of attempts of trying to impress Daisy, Gatsby is able to bring Daisy to his home through the help of Nick Caraway. “He hadn’t once ceased looking at Daisy, and I think he revalued everything in his house according to the measure of response it drew from her well-loved eyes” (Fitzgerald 91). These words expressed…show more content…
Like the people of the 1920s, we as consumers today often revolve our lives around materialistic things as well. Take Thanksgiving for example. While the holiday of Thanksgiving was started to be thankful for what we are fortunate enough to have, it has transformed dramatically. A few hours after Thanksgiving dinner, the retail industry kicks off Black Friday allowing the American consumer to spend more and obtain more material goods, forgetting what they were thinking hours ago. Likewise, many commercials nowadays portray wealth and a feeling of desire to the American consumer, with the words “sale”, “100% money back guarantee”, and the idea of buying more and more. On the contrary, beliefs in materialism and the trend of the 1920s is what allowed much more economic progress and innovations to improve. It would be hard to imagine how exactly our society would be today without

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