Conformity In The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Everyday society puts pressure on individuals to live up to its highest standards and norms. This pressure forces people of lesser class to attempt to conform and change, just to feel like they belong. Just like people in everyday society many characters in The Great Gatsby struggle to adapt and change to feel like they belong. Though there are many characters that try to create false realities in order to conform to their idealistic selves, Jay Gatsby is a character who is most successful in doing so. F. Scott Fitzgerald uses Gatsbys and characters lies to show how people tend to spend their lives trying to convince others they are something that they are not, to the point where they get so absorbed into their fantasies that they lose sight …show more content…
As we are introduced to Gatsby, he tells Nick all about his past life from where he grew up, to how he ended up in New York. Progressively as the book continues, the reader learns that Gatsby has been lying about his life. We find this out when Nick is asking Gatsby about his upbringing. While Gatsby explained his past Nick starts to feel as though Gatsby is lying about where he's from, and how he came into his money, because his facts were so absurd’ "My family all died and I came into a good deal of money." His voice was solemn, as if the memory of that sudden extinction still haunted him. For a moment I suspected he was pulling my leg, but a glance at him convinced me otherwise"(Fitzgerald 65). Gatsby has been lying about his past and present life, so that Daisy will view him as a strong and wealthy man who she can finally be with. Gatsby has been trying to pretend he is an elite from the midwest so much that he has been consumed into his new lifestyle that he forgets its not real. This is a repetitive pattern for gatsby and is seen multiple times again. Another example is when Daisy was at Gatsby’s house and Gatsby was flaunting his wealth to her, "While we admired he brought more and the soft rich heap mounted higher-shirts with lavender and faint orange, with monograms of Indian blue, suddenly, with a stained sound, Daisy bent her head into the shirts and began …show more content…
She has been having an affair with Tom, Daisy's husband. Since Myrtle was not born into a rich family like Tom, she thought she since someone from old money liked her she was higher social class then she really was. For example, Myrtle says, "I thought he knew something about breeding, but he wasn't fit to lick my shoe"(Fitzgerald 34). Myrtle is saying this about her husband, Mr. Wilson, about how he is below her socially and so he will always be. This shows she is consumed into her false reality that she is meant to be wealthy and marry Tom instead. Tom never planned on marrying Myrtle, but her desire to become rich and popular like Daisy made her take the smallest actions Tom did towards her and blow them up into elaborate hopes and dreams for the two of them. She has been doing this for so long that she has been consumed by this dream and now thinks its a reality that will happen. Myrtle shows this false reality she is living when she says, "it's really his wife that's keeping them apart. She's a Catholic, and they don't believe in divorce." Daisy was not a Catholic, and I was a little shocked at the elaborateness of the lie"(Fitzgerald 33). In this quote Catherine, Myrtle's sister, is explaining to Nick about how Daisy is the only reason Tom and Myrtle are not married by now. This is a prime example of how characters become absorbed in their lifestyle they forget who they truly are.

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