Theme Of The Prodigal Son And The Great Gatsby

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Society was deeply moved by the wave of events occurring during the 20th century. James Weldon Johnson’s “The Prodigal Son” and F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” are specific pieces of literature that capture the historical background, the heart of the nation, and leave significant lessons in remembrance of such time in history. There are several themes throughout Johnson and Fitzgerald’s literature. Individually, the theme of “The Prodigal Son” is the corruptive desire for independence. During the 20th century, also known as “The Roaring Twenties,” the United States was experiencing an era of wild youth, Jazz, and bogus prosperity. For instance, from 1920 to 1933, there was a movement called Prohibition that banned the production, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages. Disregarding the ordinance, there was still a heavy distribution of illegal alcohol. Being that “The Prodigal Son” was published in the midst of this chaos, it is believed that Johnson was influenced to create his works of art in discomfort of his surroundings. Within his poem, Johnson describes a young man that was eager to branch off from his family’s fortune. As far as his family’s place in the social class, they were well off. Unfortunately, the young man makes an irrational decision, going off to a city defined as Babylon, or a place of excessive luxury and wickedness. This can be interpreted as a representation of the reckless youth in the twenties. Society was also eager to live that
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