The Great Gatsby by Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby published
in 1925, this is a novel of triumph and tragedy, noted for the remarkable way
its author captures a cross-section of American society. In The Great Gatsby
Fitzgerald, illustrate in his poetic and
imagination way, holds a mirror up to the society o that he was a part.
Economically, 1920s was
a great economic gain period, mainly for
the upper class people. Between 1922 and 1929, dividends from stock increase by
108%, corporate profits raised by 76%, and personal earnings raised by 33%.
Nick’s journey to East to make his fortune in the bond business is not completely
untested. Mainly because of developments in technology, productivity improved though
overall production costs reduced, and economy was increased. The stock market crash happened in 1929. He didn’t predict that, but in the commercial growth of
the 1920s resulted in broad materialism. As people start to have more money,
they started to buy more. So the revenues raised, more goods was peoduced, and
people earned more money. People started to spend their money on consumer
goods like cars, radios, telephones, and
refrigerators at a rate never before
seen. And also started to expend time
and money on recreation and leisure. Professional sports started to grow in
The modernization of
society speeded and life in the city was more happy than ever before.
Accompanied by the new jazz music, this new way of life to some that never
ending display of immoral behavior. One of the most radical counter reactions
to the changes in society and the new way of life was the introduction of Prohibition,
a law which made it illegal to production and sell alcohol. however it never really
succeeded with its purpose, Prohibition changed the liquor market mainly. A lot
of money earned by smuggling, selling
alcohol and in some cases fortunes made by lower social class people. The
Prohibition was important for the time and it plays a vital role in the novel.
Another feature of this
novel is that has historical roots centres on the 18th Amendment to the Constitution:
prohibition sanctioned in 1919. This made it illegal for anyone to production,
sell, or transport liquor of any kind. Millions of Americans welcomed this
amendment as a good advance. Despite the millions who supported prohibition,
millions also broke the law and drank the forbidden liquor. The organized crime
stepped in to meet the demand when the illegal liquor business became
profitable. Production and distributing alcohol were big businesses during the
years of prohibition and helped make the fortunes of the newly rich found
within Fitzgerald’s novel, with Meyer Wolfshiem and Gatsby.
Many women move in the
workforce when men went to war and don’t want to give up the by-products of
their work , social and economic freedom , when men came back from the war. In 1920,
the 19th Amendment was passed. That gave the women the right to vote, made their
independence even more vital. In 1920s, young men and women declined to be
content sustaining the status quo, and so they openly and wholeheartedly
Socially, the 1920s
made a major change especially for
women. Women bobbed the hair, that one great indicator of traditional
femininity. To complement their more masculine look, women also started to give
up wearing corsets, the restrictive undergarment planned to emphasize a woman’s
hips, waist, and breasts, as if to reinvent themselves, according to their own
rules. Other things women have done that was before unheard of comprised of smoking
and drinking openly, as well as relaxing formerly firm attitudes toward sex. Myrtle
wanted to alter to that present society. So she determined to do so at all
costs. Daisy tried to break away from the limited society that she raised, but
she couldn’t break completely and so she falls back into the only thing she
knows, money. Jordan Baker, too, is an liberated woman. She passes time as a
professional golfer, a profession made possible largely because of the social
and economic progress of the 1920s.
by earning and spending money and also in that time a change in how wealth was
measured began to happen. His attention in money something that Fitzgerald shared with many of the young
men that he went to Princeton with and tried to pursue a career in the business
world. Houses, land, and machinery were always in focus when it came to measure
the wealth. Though, a person’s yearly revenue became more relevant as earning
and spending money was more than ever before a way to grade success, and
failure as well. But Jay Gatsby is a very wealthy man, he is, since he falls
short in most of the features that determines a person’s social status, not an equal
to the likes of Daisy and Tom in the eyes of the old upper class society.
Therefore, Gatsby never stands a chance of succeeding with his attempt to win
back Daisy, who is a part of that society and of a various status.
In Tom Buchanan, Fitzgerald shows that the
upper class man used his old family money to get whatever he likes even women.
As a representative of the whole upper class Tom denotes all the negative
things about a divided society as he was ready to sacrifice people around him
for his own selfish need. Tom’s arrogance can be explained by the fact that he
lived his whole life trusting that he belongs to a superior group of people due
to his privileged heritage.
Gatsby is Fitzgerald’s characterization
of the American Dream, with his journey from a farm boy to a very wealthy man
who lives luxury. Gatsby’s dream is not, though, complete without Daisy and his
dream of winning her is not possible
because of the social status. Gatsby’s heritage doesn’t make a social status
that is similar to Daisy’s, according to the society that she is a part of, and
that is what becomes his downfall. At the
end, Fitzgerald accepts the influence background has on human relationships.
Daisy is an example of this as she selects to commit to her, in her society, high
social status than a life with Gatsby, which will adversely affect her status.
So from this novel, I could
understand economy and society that Fitzgerald obviously shows how the economy
and society changes and the depth of it, as there are more aspects to it than
what we can assume by looking at a particular lifestyle. Through Gatsby,
Fitzgerald shows the enterprising Jazz Ager, someone who has worked hard and
profited from listening and responding to the demands of the society. Unluckily,
despite his success, Gatsby is never able to capture his dreams. Even though
Fitzgerald’s story is a fiction, is
informed by reality, helps to make it one of the most treasured pieces of early
twentieth century American fiction.