Theme Of The American Dream In The Great Gatsby

700 Words3 Pages
The interwar period was the age of the Lost Generation. Exhibiting the decayed and frivolous lifestyle of the upper class, literary works in this period shared a common theme of the corruption of the American Dream. One of the most representative literary works that discusses this theme is F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, in which Gatsby’s love with Daisy Fay in his youth promoted him to be a pursuer of the upper-class lifestyle to marry her. Gatsby’s accidental encounter with Daisy in his past frames his character’s development and thus the overall development of the plot. Utilizing symbolism and motif, F. Scott Fitzgerald exhibits the degeneration of Gatsby’s dreams and values to denounce the emptiness of materialism and the death of the American Dream. F. Scott Fitzgerald employs symbolism to demonstrate the decadence of Gatsby’s dream. Gatsby’s old dream of Greatness and Independence, representing the original American Dream, fades away after he meets Daisy and is replaced by a new dream, symbolizing the corrupted American Dream. At the beginning of the novel, Gatsby stretches out his arms to embrace a beam of distant and dimmed green light on the dark sea, indicating that the dream is simply a fantasy that can never be realized. The green light symbolizes Gatsby’s new dream, which consists of property, currency, and Daisy. Later when Gatsby realizes that Daisy’s irresistible voice is full of money, F. Scott Fitzgerald emphasizes the green light’s symbolic
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