‘the Great Gatsby Depicts a Society Which Exists in a State of Confusion and Moral Chaos.’ Discuss.

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SAC: Critical written response to The Great Gatsby

2. ‘The Great Gatsby depicts a society which exists in a state of confusion and moral chaos.’ Discuss.

The Great Gatsby is a novel written by F. Scott Fitzgerald set during the 1920s about a man named Jay Gatsby through Nick Carraway’s eyes, and is considered one of the great pieces of American literature of all-time. The Great Gatsby shows a society that is in an immoral and crazed state. Jay Gatsby himself shows the corrupt American society and lifestyle. Affairs and cheating display the unethical aspects of the community. Materialism and the desire for possessions cause people to dispose themselves of values. The inaccuracy of the American Dream leaves the society confused and complicated.

In deeper analysis of the novel, Gatsby is not all that ‘great’ and in some ways is typical of the society of the time. He has one goal in life: to rewrite the past and get Daisy back, the woman of his dreams. But in order to do this, he relies on gaining material wealth through illegal and unethical means. Gatsby admits to Nick that he is, "...in the drug store business,” secretly meaning that he is a bootlegger, an underground seller and distributer of illegal alcohol. He receives continuous calls from his associates in Chicago and Philadelphia, hotspots of alcohol production. The society Gatsby wants to be a part of is based on money and power, not faith and love. Although Gatsby may claim all his actions are in order to reach out and grab his true love, he becomes accustomed to his lavish lifestyle and class in society that he sees nothing wrong with his activities. Gatsby shares a seedy relationship with Meyer Wolfsheim, a gambler and allegedly a man who fixed the 1919 World Series, who together, “...bought up a lot of side-street drug stores here in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter,” shady businesses that seem to corrupt Gatsby. Gatsby becomes close to Daisy, a woman who is already in a...
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