Examples Of Materialism In The Great Gatsby

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The social writer F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote The Great Gatsby to touch upon many social issues, such as the ever-prevalent American Dream, and human pursuits such as the need for love, power, social recognition, and purpose.
Set in the Jazz Age, themes such as how money and greed destroy people are brought forth. In The Great Gatsby, the characters are hedonistic and decadent; just like some people in today’s society. Fitzgerald questions this self-seeking mentality: Is it worth it? Will it lead you anywhere? The Great Gatsby is seen by some as an important snapshot of 1920s in America and, due to this, it could appear to be a novel of its time. However, because it could be argued hedonistic societies still exist today, I wanted
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He personifies the Buchanan’s mansion: ‘The lawn… ran towards the front door… jumping over sundials… as though from the momentum of its run’ . Fitzgerald’s idea of materialism is intentionally embedded into the narration to rhetorically question the power of possession: if inanimate objects had human characteristics, and they were possessions of human beings, then what would that make of the animate? Although a very abstract idea, this encapsulates Fitzgerald’s thoughts on the American dream – he thought it had a power to change …show more content…
All the characters in The Great Gatsby are somehow tied to the American Dream, which leads to their own destruction and, in Gatsby’s case, ‘death was the only way to escape’. The problem with this American Dream is that it is self-seeking: Daisy ‘blossomed for him (Gatsby)’. The words ‘for him’ is a clear indication of Gatsby’s hedonistic pursuit. In his mind, she was his fantasy because of the ‘colossal vitality of his illusion’ and she even ‘tumbled short’ of Gatsby’s his dreams. Daisy embodies the superficiality of the American Dream. The word ‘life’ in The Great Gatsby often comes after the words ‘rich, full’ : a reflection of society, especially during the 1920s, as it was believed that it was impossible to have a ‘full’ life without money. Similarly, Gatsby’s idea of success is Daisy because she is his epitome of ‘wealth, status and the good life’. However, as Daisy’s name suggests, she is a flower – here today and gone tomorrow, synonymous with everything she epitomizes and a wider representation of the inconsistent, mutable aspirations of the people in the 1920s. In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald therefore captures the behaviour and philosophy of that time and highlights the futility of the American

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