Theme Of Desire In The Great Gatsby

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Society and literature have presented constant concepts throughout all texts, notably, individual desire has been a universal standard through which love and social expectation can be explored. However, whilst this is a universal theme, differing contexts can produce new explorations and perceptions of classical beliefs, reinforcing distinctive qualities within texts. Notably, Elizabeth Barret Browning’s Sonnets from the Portuguese challenged literary and societal standards of the Victorian era, whilst Scott. F. Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby similarly challenges the extravagance and cultural devaluation of the ‘roaring 20s’. Yet both texts explore individual desire in different manners, using distinctive form, language, tone and techniques, which is the result of differing perspectives and their respective historical, social and …show more content…

F. Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby constructs a reflection upon individual desire in a darker, extravagant and secular manner, whilst using intertextual values of love and women in society. Through the 1st person narrator, Nick Carraway, we explore the extravagant and bustling life of the ‘roaring 20s’ in the fictional region of East and West Egg, New York, notably depicted through the lifestyle of Jay Gatsby, the ultimate personification of desire and aspiration. Jay Gatsby’s aspirations is not for that of wealth or power, rather, these are the means for which he can unify the love held between himself and former lover Daisy Buchanan, now married to Tom Buchanan. This ill-fated romantic schism ultimately results in the deaths of Jay Gatsby, Tom Buchanan’s mistress Myrtle, and Myrtle’s husband George, with the novel ending upon Nick’s reflection of events and his resignation from the East. Fitzgerald compounds his text with the flavourful language of Nick, a bystander and sceptic to the ‘American Dream’, thus, 1st person language is an effective medium through which we perceive Gatsby’s apparent individualistic

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