The Road as the Decay of the American Dream in Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby'

Kobo ebook | October 16, 2015

The Road as the Decay of the American Dream in Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby'
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Essay from the year 2011 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Literature, grade: 15,5, University of Avignon (Faculté de philosophie, arts et lettres), course: English Literature - In-Depth Study Of A Theme, language: English, abstract: Francis Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby was published in New York in 1925. Those years in America, the 1920s, are often considered as the Roaring Twenties: a decade of great social change, a decade of jazz, an age of success and American Dream, an age of everything. The American Dream is often described as the aspiration of young Americans to live better than their parents: without war, poverty and misfortune but with love, wealth and happiness. In fact after World War I many Americans wished to return to the peaceful time they had before the war. During the 1920s, Americans focused on building economic prosperity and most people focused on the present with little concern for the future: life became easier and more enjoyable. Unfortunately, this age of prosperity, complete independence, self-reliance and opportunity quickly became an age of downfall: in order to pursue this utopia, people were asked to work harder. In consequence they could not prosper themselves but only endured. Fitzgerald condemns this American society of the 1920s that has lost its pursuit of progress for happiness to finally become purely materialistic and corrupt. In this essay, I will deal with the road from the Midwest to New York City and the road from West Egg to East Egg both exemplifying the decay of the American Dream, personified by the characters of Jay Gatsby and Nick Carraway, as there is a strong relationship in the novel between the geography of the roads and the characters' social values. On the one hand is the journey of Nick Carraway coming from the Midwest and going to New York City where he discovers corruption and immorality. On the other hand we find the road Jay Gatsby is following to be accepted among the wealthiest and to be loved by Daisy. This road, from West Egg to East Egg, represents the movement from solemnity and honesty to obsession of class and privilege. I wish to show that these two roads epitomize the decay of the American Dream: through two main characters of the novel and in two different ways that we will discover in this essay, the two roads or journeys that are followed by these two characters start from a point of moral prosperity to move them towards a state of moral decay: Gatsby more profoundly than the Nick. This essay will be twofold: the first part will concern the road from West Egg to East Egg that Jay Gatsby follows while the second part will deal with the road of Nick Carraway: the road from the Midwest to New York City.

Title:The Road as the Decay of the American Dream in Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby'Format:Kobo ebookPublished:October 16, 2015Publisher:GRIN VerlagLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:3656118795

ISBN - 13:9783656118794

Appropriate for ages: All ages

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