What Is The Green Light In The Great Gatsby

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The Great Gatsby is a novel written by the American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. The novel follows Nick Carraway as he moves from the Midwest to a place a little out of New York called West Egg in the spring of 1922; an era of economic boom, prohibition and bootlegging. Chasing the American Dream, Nick lands next door to the mysterious Gatsby, who is chasing his American dream: Daisy Buchanan. What is the American Dream? The term was first used by the American historian James Truslow Adams in his book The Epic of America, which was written in 1931, here he stated that the American Dream is that dream of a land that in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. But, till today…show more content…
We are first introduced to the green light at the end of chapter 1: “… he stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and, far as I was from him, I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward – and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away, that might have been the end of the dock.” (p. 28) This passage of the book not only explains the difference between the people of East Egg (old money e.g. the Buchanans) and West Egg (new money e.g. Gatsby and Nick), but also foreshadows the faith of Jay Gatsby. We are told that the green light is “minute and far away”, which insinuates that what Gatsby is looking at is something in sight but at the same time something unreachable. This proves to be true for Gatsby, since Daisy chooses Tom over him at the end. The people of West Egg will always be chasing the American Dream, meanwhile, the green light is close to Tom and Daisy, who do not need the American Dream, because they are born into wealth and
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