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The Great Gatsby Report Essay, Research Paper

 “A Book Report on ?The Great Gatsby?

The Great Gatsby, a novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is about the

American Dream, and the downfall of those who attempt to reach its

illusionary goals. The attempt to capture the American Dream is central to

many novels. This dream is different for different people, but in The Great

Gatsby, for Jay, the dream is that through wealth and power, one can

acquire happiness. To get this happiness Jay must reach into the past and

relive an old dream and in order to do this he must have wealth and power.

Jay Gatsby, the central figure of the story, is one character who

longs for the past. Surprisingly he devotes most of his adult life trying to

recapture it and, finally, dies in its pursuit. In the past, Jay had a love affair

with the affluent Daisy. Knowing he could not marry her because of the

difference in their social status, he leaves her to amass wealth to reach

her economic standards. Once he acquires this wealth, he moves near to

Daisy, “Gatsby bought that house so that Daisy would be just across the

bay,” and throws extravagant parties, hoping by chance she might show up

at one of them. He, himself, does not attend his parties but watches them

from a distance. When this dream doesn’t happen, he asks around

casually if anyone knows her. Soon he meets Nick Carraway, a cousin of

Daisy, who agrees to set up a meeting, “He wants to know…if you’ll invite

Daisy to your house some afternoon and then let him come over.”

Gatsby’s personal dream symbolizes the larger American Dream where all

have the opportunity to get what they want.

Later, as we see in the Plaza Hotel, Jay still believes that Daisy loves

him. He is convinced of this as is shown when he takes the blame for

Myrtle’s death. “Was Daisy driving?” “Yes…but of course I’ll say I was.” He

also watches and protects Daisy as she returns home. “How long are you

going to wait?” “All night if necessary.” Jay cannot accept that the past is

gone and done with. Jay is sure that he can capture his dream with wealth

and influence. He believes that he acted for a good beyond his personal

interest and that should guarantee success.

Nick attempts to show Jay the folly of his dream, but Jay innocently

replies to Nick’s assertion that the past cannot be relived by saying, “Yes

you can, old sport.” This shows the confidence that Jay has in fulfilling his

American Dream. For Jay, his dream is not material possessions,

although it may seem that way. He only comes into riches so that he can

fulfill his true dream, Daisy.

Gatsby doesn’t rest until his American Dream is finally fulfilled.

However, it never comes about and he ends up paying the ultimate price

for it. The idea of the American Dream still holds true in today’s time, be it

wealth, love, or fame. But one thing never changes about the American

Dream; everyone desires something in life, and everyone, somehow,

strives to get it. Gatsby is a prime example of pursuing the American

Dream.

It is a marvelously written story with multiple themes. It has been

described as one of the best books to come out of the United States, and

I cannot dispute this. It deals with the utter shallowness of society, and the

morally corrupt underbelly of the rich and the powerful. This is an excellent

story that is recommended who have the time to read it.


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