The Great Gatsby
Christian Tooth Melee 8 The Great Gatsby Essay 6. 4. 13 In The Great Gatsby, we are faced with many interpretations of the American Dream. The American Dream is often seen achievable in different ways than others. The rebellious, middle aged, wealthy individuals have already achieved their own interpretation of the American Dream. Whereas the working class, in The Valley of Ashes, is still trying to obtain the motivation to find their own American Dream. Throughout The Great Gatsby, one might find that the idea of the American Dream is good, but the process of obtaining the American Dream is corrupt.
The constant theme of betrayal is brought up multiple times in The Great Gatsby. Betrayal is common everywhere in life and is used to even achieve the American dream. “If The Great Gatsby can be interpreted as a study of an ethos in transition, the Americans it deals with retaining a certain innocence and vitality of desire we connect with a simpler, less deceptive phase of their history, but now confused as to values, mistaking losses for gains, and committing their hopes and beliefs to symbols that are shallow and inadequate, then the continual references to violated nature deepen our sense of what they have betrayed in themselves. Westbrook, peg. 81) Westbrook is referring to the actions taken by the characters in the book. For example, Daisy’s betrayal towards Jay Gatsby could have possibly been the biggest turning point. Daisy, being so focused on her wealth and status with Tom, forgets what she promised Gatsby five year earlier. Daisy’s desires for Tom’s riches causes her to stray away from the people who really care for her, unlike Tom who cheats on her.
Through Daisy’s actions of obtaining her own interpretation of the American Dream, she ends up betraying the only man who truly loved her. Another example of the American Dream turning someone into something they re not is Jay Gatsby. Within the book, readers can notice Gatsby change from a very relaxed, charming man, into a paranoid and almost obsessive human being. “I suppose Daisy’s call too. ‘ he looked at me anxiously, as if he hoped I’d corroborate this. L suppose so. ” (Fitzgerald, 154) This may seem like normal saying, but Gatsby says this shortly after he has been denied by Daisy. Gatsby is in denial and cannot accept that she wants to stay with Tom. Gatsby dream is to live with Daisy back in Louisville. Throughout the story, readers start to pick up on the reoccurring event, the parties. The parties are meant for Daisy and Gatsby will do whatever he can do get her attention again.
When Daisy first accepts Gatsby love again but soon after denies it in front of her peers, it crushes Gatsby. Gatsby cannot fully grasp the fact that she has moved on. Gatsby ambition to win Daisy back and fulfill his dreams causes him to become so corrupt that he cannot accept this new version of Daisy. Daisy has changed since her and Gatsby had last met and Gatsby has not realized it yet. This causes Gatsby to become somewhat obsessive and blinded from reality which causes him to go down the wrong path