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The Great Gatsby and the Power of Love

The Great Gatsby and the Power of Love

“It was an extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness such as I have never found in any other person and which is not likely I shall ever find again.” (2). The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a novel that takes place in the Roaring 20’s. It’s about a man who changes everything he is for the inaccessible woman of his dreams. After losing her before the war because of his financial status, he finally tries to win her heart back through his newly attained money. She is faced with a cheating husband and a man who wants to repeat the past. In the end, she has blood on her hands. After all his effort, he loses her in a heated argument and he loses his life to a misunderstanding. The one thing that Gatsby yearned for his entire life was, in the end, what corrupted him and did him in, love.

The one reason that Gatsby existed in this vast universe was for the love of Daisy Buchanan. She was the reason for his every breath, heartbeat, though, and action. He talks about her like she is an object to be worshiped and he is practicing her religion. He throws immense parties that outdo everyone’s expectations in hopes of her simply showing up one day. He has changed his identity for his get rich scheme to prove his worth to her. ” `Her voice is full of money,’ he [Gatsby] said suddenly.” Gatsby knows exactly what the key to getting Daisy back is. After their meetings continue on a regular basis, he fires his staff to keep their affair secret. He even goes as far as to convince her that she never loved her husband, and he tries to get her to confess this to Tom. But the thing that out shows it all is when he takes the blame for a murder committed …

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…tely to his demise. He wanted to return to when he had the girl and life was simple. But the truth was, he wasn’t James Gatz, the man that girl had fallen for, he was now Jay Gatsby, a stranger to Daisy. ” `Can’t repeat the past?’ he [Gatsby] cried incredulously. `Why of course you can!'” (73). Maybe James Gatz could have gone back and repeated the past, but not Jay Gatsby, someone who hadn’t exist in that time.

Works Cited and Consulted

Bewley, Marius. “Scott Fitzgerald’s Criticism of America.” Twentieth Century Interpretations of The Great Gatsby. Ed. Ernest Lockridge. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1968. 37-53.

Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. London: Penguin Books, 1990.

Trilling, Lionel. “F. Scott Fitzgerald.” Critical Essays on Scott Fitzgerald’s “Great Gatsby.” Ed. Scott Donaldson. Boston: Hall, 1984. 13-20.

Criticism of Capitalism in The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald

Criticism of Capitalism in The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald

In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald creates an artificial world where money is the object of everyone’s desire. The characters, the setting, and the plot are very deeply submerged in a Capitalism that ends up destroying many of them. Fitzgerald’s criticism of Capitalism can be seen as a move to subtly promote Socialism, an ideology in which value is placed on the inherent value of an object rather than its market value. In a late collection of notes, Fitzgerald himself proclaims that he is “essentially Marxist.” [i] Marxism is a specific branch of Socialist theory. Fitzgerald makes Gatsby a novel that is not inherently Marxist or even Socialist, but one that is imbued with Marxist theory. He does this by denouncing nonhumanitarianism, reification, and market value. Fitzgerald implies that the Capitalist system does not work because at the end of the novel, all of the characters that represent typical American Capitalism end up either dead or completely unhappy. Fitzgerald’s criticisms work to warn 1920’s Americans of their behavior and how destructive it can be.

Marxists believe very firmly in humanitarianism; they believe that as humans, we should look out for each other and care for each other, because we are all essentially on the same level. All of the characters in Gatsby nullify this idea, because they all use each other. For instance, Gatsby uses Nick to set up a meeting between he and Daisy. The characters also place very little value on individual human beings or on humanity as a whole. Each character is too wrapped up in him/herself that he/she does not take the time to care for others. Class levels are pr…

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Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996.

Lewis, Roger. “Money, Love, and Aspiration in The Great Gatsby.” New Essays on The Great Gatsby. Ed. Matthew J. Bruccoli. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1985. 41-57.

Posnock, Ross. ” ‘A New World, Without Being Real’: Fitzgerald’s Critique of Capitalism in The Great Gatsby.” Critical Essays on Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. Ed. Scott Donaldson. Boston: GK Hall and Co., 1984. 201-213.

Notes

[i] Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Crack Up.

[ii] Lewis, Roger. “Money, Love, and Aspiration in The Great Gatsby.” P. 51

[iii] Posnack, Ross. “‘A New World, Material without Being Real’: Fitzgerald’s Critique of Capitalism in The Great Gatsby.” P. 202.

[iv] Ibid., p. 203.

[v] Ibid., p. 206.

[vi] Ibid., p. 208.

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