The American Dream In The Great Gatsby Analysis

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Discuss Fitzgerald 's presentation of the American Dream in the novel. The American Dream is defined by the ideal where the opportunity for prosperity and success, as well as an upward social mobility, can be achieved through hard work and determination by any American-regardless of social class or circumstances of birth. Despite such positive connotations for this ideal, its darker side is found to be explored throughout the novel. The fact that this Dream is unrealistic, corruptive, attractive but ultimately dangerous, is portrayed through characterisation of various characters. The attractiveness of this ideal is the emphasis on how anyone will be able to become financially or socially successful, and this can be seen through the characterisation of Gatsby. He is from a family of 'shiftless and unsuccessful farm people ', but he aspired to be much more. His ambition is encapsulated in the immaculate schedule he made when he was a mere child and in the motif of the green light. The resolve to succeed is seen in his detailed schedule, where even though he is born into a family of farmers, he 'stud[ies] electricity, etc ' and 'needed inventions ' which shows his desire to expand his knowledge and enrich his mind by not limiting himself to only farming. Furthermore, he 'practice[s] elocution, poise and how to attain it ' on his own accord, showing his understanding that his outward appearance also has to change in order to portray himself as an educated and cultured
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