Cautionary Tale For The American Dream

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The Great Dream Though often marketed as a romantic story, The Great Gatsby was written as a commentary on the American dream and as a cautionary tale for those pursuing it. It shows that only those who are born into exceptional wealth are able to achieve it, while those from the lower class trying to attain it, such as the Wilsons or Gatsby, who work hard their whole life end up dead. Finally the Buchanans, born into wealth, who do achieve the dream it are disliked by all around them. So The ‘Great’ Gatsby who was not born rich but who worked so hard to appear such, falls short of dream, Nick leaves him watching over the Buchanan house after the termination of Daisy and Gatsby’s relationship at the plaza. He says “So I walked away and left …show more content…
Tom Buchanan is the only one able to keep Daisy and by extension achieve the American dream. He also comes from very old money and this is one of the main reasons he was able to marry Daisy. Even though she did not love him at first, everything he was able to provide her with, be that material items, security or status is what won her over. She got herself drunk the day of her wedding and had a fit, trying to convince everyone to let her change her mind, she tried to give back the string of pearls worth three hundred and fifty thousand dollars. Jordan says, “We gave her spirits of ammonia and put ice on her forehead and hooked her back into her dress, and half an hour later, when we walked out of the room the pearls were around her neck and the incident was over.” (76). Daisy was roped back into her marriage by the material string of pearls around her neck and by the promise of a secure life and high status. Although Tom Buchanan is able to attain the American dream he is hated by everyone around him, including his wife. Nick describes him as having “Two shining arrogant eyes that established dominance over his face and gave him the appearance of always leaning aggressively forward.” (7). They were acquaintances at Yale but never close and Nick finds him off putting. He is …show more content…
All those in the novel born in the lower class were killed by the end of the story and in the words of Nick, “the holocaust was complete.” (162). Chasing the American dream while poor was a deadly choice for both Gatsby and Myrtle. Myrtle is attempting to reach the American dream through her affair with Tom. She has all the fancy clothes and the lifestyle when spending time with Tom and gets to try on the dream but she can never actually achieve it because she always has to go home to Wilson. And in the end, her pursuing the dream is what kills her, she runs out to meet what she thinks is Tom’s car and meets her end at the hands of Daisy who is the embodiment of the dream. So, her running out to meet her dream is what kills her. Gatsby also meets his end at her perusal of the American dream, he protects Daisy, taking the blame for Myrtle’s death he insures his own at the hands of Myrtle’s husband. Gatsby is so desperate to achieve the dream and, correspondingly, be with Daisy that he sacrifices his life for her and the dream. Gatsby confesses to Nick that, “Well there I was, ‘way of my ambitions getting deeper in love every minute, and all of a sudden I didn’t care.” (150). Gatsby invested all he had in the perusal of Daisy and simultaneously the American dream and in the end he gave his life in order to protect her. If he couldn’t have her

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