preview

Myrtle's Use Of Materialism In The Great Gatsby

Good Essays
The Moral Decay of the Materialistic Although F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby debuted in 1925– before the Great Depression– it serves as a prophetic exemplification of the the material excess of the 1920s that drowned out signs of the coming Great Depression. The book’s plot follows the bootlegger Jay Gatsby as he pursues his old love Daisy Buchanan through flaunting his new extravagant lifestyle, mainly by throwing ostentatious parties. Yet, in the end, Daisy chooses her unfaithful husband Tom over Gatsby. Through Fitzgerald’s use of wealthy, materialistic characters, he comments on the effect of the material excess of the roaring twenties: moral corruption. To further explain, Fitzgerald captures materialism-induced corruption with…show more content…
When Myrtle begs Tom for a dog, he nonchalantly hands her too much money and “decisively” says “Here's your money. Go and buy ten more dogs with it” (Fitzgerald 28).Tom’s angry and ‘decisive’ tone of voice is because he uses Myrtle’s must assert dominance through materialism. As, Myrtle does not need ten dogs, yet Tom wishes to flaunt both his wealth and dominance by commanding her to buy them. Because of Tom, Myrtle also lives in excess and must face moral corruption. As after she buys the dog, Nick describes that she Therefore, she wishes to buy a dog, simply to show that Tom’s money allows her to and has no intention of actually caring for it. Therefore, Tom and Myrtle’s relationship is sustained shared desire to flaunt their wealth and display a lack of compassion. Whether it be Gatsby’s futile collection of books, Daisy’s tears over expensive clothing, or Tom’s assertion that Myrtle buy ten dogs, Fitzgerald’s representation of the 1920s in The Great Gatsby is an excellent example of the material excess and underlying corruption in the Gilded Age. His exemplification extends beyonds its prophetic prediction of the Great Depression. It serves as vigilance to moral decay from wealth and
Get Access