The Pearl And The Great Gatsby Analysis

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The Great Gatsby and The Pearl, two great American novels, both depict men who struggle with ambition. Kino, a poor pearl-diver, stumbles upon a great fortune and quickly loses focus because of his greed. Jay Gatsby, an extraordinarily rich New Yorker, searches in vain for the one love that could fulfill all of his desires. One is from the slums of Mexico, the other from upper-class America. Both, however, exemplify human nature and the powerful force of greed. The Pearl and The Great Gatsby both ask the question, what is the American dream? Both novels confront the dangers of prosperity: the love of wealth, power, and ambition, as viewed through the experiences of Kino and Gatsby.
At the beginning of The Pearl, Kino and his family are
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When he finds the pearl, Kino initially only wants to use his newly acquired wealth to help his family. He tells his neighbors that he wants to marry Juana in the Church, buy Coyotito clothing, and give him an education. In fact, the only object that Kino wants for himself is a gun (24,25). Kino, however, soon infatuated with using the pearl, even when Juana pleads him to part with it. “This is our chance,” he says “Our son must go to school. He must break out of the pot that holds us” (38,39). When Kino is told his pearl is worthless, he vows to go to the capital, forgetting his former contentment. Kino’s descent into greed and aggression reaches a pinnacle when he attacks Juana and kills a man in self-defense. As he is force to flee from the law, Kino realizes how far away from his previous life his ambition has taken him. “The pearl is my soul,” he says, “If I give it up I shall lose my soul” …show more content…
Gatsby, through Nick’s help, meets with Daisy to woo her and, as they become aquainted once again, they begin an affair. Though Gatsby wins Daisy’s affection with his wealth, her affection does not fulfill all his ambition; he wants all of Daisy’s love. “He wanted nothing less of Daisy than that she should go to Tom and say: ‘I never loved you” (109). His ambition is driven by his own confidence in himself based on his previous accomplishments; “I’m going to fix everything just the way it was before,” he says when Nick questions his future with Daisy (110). Gatsby’s persistence and greed, however, leads Daisy to reject him. Daisy, however, is Gatsby’s only real love; without Daisy, his life is meaningless. Until he dies, Gatsby still has hope that Daisy will return to him and, in his last conversation with Nick, insists that she will contact him again. Gatsby invested all his energy and attention to the unattainable goal that would be the pinnacle of his successes, but, his goals turn into obsessions and he loses

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