Why Is Materialism Important In The Great Gatsby

1193 Words5 Pages
The Great Gatsby is a novel that illustrates the potential danger of materialism. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby illustrates materials and possessions are crucial to the plot development and represent the social status of the characters.
Automobiles are a symbol that exhibits society and social classes but also play a crucial role in events of The Great Gatsby. The first important instance we see an automobile driven in the novel eerily foreshadows events towards the end. As Gatsby is throwing one of his frequent elaborate parties, a minor single-vehicle accident occurs as the party is dying down. The party goers are both heavily intoxicated and the car is crashed into a ditch. A man jumps out of the coupe and is mistaken as the driver or owner until another man emerges. Fitzgerald inserts a piece about people loving machines despite not knowing how they operate, in the dialogue. However, there is trivial mentions of automobiles mostly in passing, to show the materialism of the 1920s. Nick visits Tom and Daisy at their home; Daisy questions Nick about folks back home about missing her and he jokes that they are mourning by painting one of the wheels of the car black. Another trivial time is before the apartment party with Myrtle, Tom, and Nick. After exiting the train, the three are hailing a taxi but Myrtle refuses each one until she
…show more content…
Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby demonstrates the materialism of the 1920’s. Materials have great importance to the events that take place but most importantly show the social classes of the characters. Gatsby fantasizes that money will bring him love and happiness; which brings him from the lower class to “New Money”. Despite his wealth, he cannot compare to Daisy’s husband Tom because they are from “Old Money”. Pursuing materials and money become deadly for Gatsby. Automobiles are important because they are a way to show off for “New Money” but are also a way for direct and indirect deaths of two
Open Document