The Facade Of The American Dream In F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

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The Facade of the American Dream The American Dream is the opportunity for all Americans to live a life of personal happiness and material comfort, but is it actually achievable? F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby, is a story of characters working hard to achieve the American Dream, but ultimately they are unable to ever realize their perfect life. The novel makes a strong naturalism argument about the rigid class system in society and the disillusionment of the American Dream. Throughout the story, Fitzgerald uses three vastly different geographical areas to show the separation between classes. The Valley of Ashes, where the poor live, is described as a “desolate area of land ... [where] spasms of bleak dust drift endlessly” (Fitzgerald 23). The poor people are trapped here, and no matter how hard they work, they can never escape this grim existence. The idea of no social mobility, and having no control over one's life, reflects the Naturalist view of society. Nick Carraway and Gatsby live in “West Egg, the -- well, the less fashionable of the two” (Fitzgerald 5). West Egg is the area where the self-made men and women, …show more content…

John A. Pidgeon says that, “The theme of Gatsby is the withering of the American Dream”(Pidgeon 179). The prime example of this is Gatsby, who “believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter--to-morrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther” (Fitzgerald 180). The green light symbolizes Gatsby’s dream to be upper class with Daisy, but he can never reach it. Furthermore, it is frustrating for him that when he does attain wealth, Daisy is still out of his reach. Every day, he works harder and harder to achieve his American Dream, but is never fully able to accomplish

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