Alienation In The Great Gatsby

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People often have trouble finding their place within societal relationships, both romantically and platonically. Once they are alienated in the first place, people can lack the guidance to re-establish these relationships. In The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald and The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway, some of the characters face problems with recognizing their place in society, or lack of such a place. Jay Gatsby and Robert Cohn are both outliers in their societal groups, but neither situation is completely revealed until they actively fight for status and respect. Gatsby and Cohn both harbor delusions about their places in society, but Gatsby is completely illusioned whereas Cohn realizes the truth to a certain extent. Fitzgerald and Hemingway examine how being alienated in society can lead to having untrue perceptions about one’s relationships with others. Gatsby and Cohn both have delusions about their places within romantic relationships as they pursue women who do not wish to commit to them. Gatsby, as he tries to “win” Daisy at the hotel, is sure that she loves him wholeheartedly. In an attempt to cement their relationship once and for all, he directs her to reveal her utter lack of love for Tom. However, Daisy…show more content…
Both characters are unable to truly become part of their desired social group and are eventually forced out by explicit conflict. Alienation prevents people from having clear views of others’ thoughts and personalities, therefore causing them to become misguided and illusioned. Without caution, one’s illusioned viewpoint can lead into further alienation and spiral further and further. Only by creating a physical change in location or circumstance can one break the cycle, instead of hoping the abstraction of alienation can change on its
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