The Great Gatsby Setting Analysis

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The setting of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby plays a crucial role in the formation of the readers’ understanding of major themes present in the novel. The most prominent physical setting can be easily discerned, consisting of the use of East Egg, West Egg and the Valley of Ashes to build the sense of segregation between and within different social classes. As well, The Great Gatsby offers a view of American life during the ‘Roaring Twenties’, embracing ideas of moral corruption and material excess during this era. It highlights the fall of the American Dream, where noble thoughts are often ignored with the dizzying rise of national wealth. By analyzing the upper class during the 1920s through the eyes of Nick Carraway, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1925 novel The Great Gatsby demonstrates how the author uses setting to present the themes of the novel, as well as the characters and their actions. The portrayal of differences in characters and social class in the novel is evident in the physical setting of East and West Egg. After moving to West Egg, Nick finds that he has “rented a house in one of the strangest communities in North America (Fitzgerald 8)”. Though both areas have wealthy inhabitants, the rich are still segregated in two distinct categories. The first group would be those living in the East Egg, comprising of Jordan Baker, Tom and Daisy Buchanan, whom are born into their wealth. As portrayed in the novel, the wealthy individuals living in East Egg are seen to be more superior compared to compared to those in West Egg. They have ‘old money’, which gives their wealth greater social value. Moreover, when Nick arrives at…show more content…
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