The Great Gatsby as Modernist Literature
By the end of World War I, many America authors were ready to change their ways and views on writing. Authors were tired of tradition and limitations. One of these writers was F. Scott Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald was a participant in the wild parties with bootleg liquor, but he was also a critic of this time. His book, The Great Gatsby is an excellent example of modernist literature, through its use of implied themes and fragmented storyline.
The Great Gatsby is a book about Jay Gatsby's quest for Daisy Buchanan. During the book, Jay tries numerous times at his best to grasp his dream of being with Daisy. The narrator of the book Nick Carraway finds himself in a pool of corruption and material wealth. Near the end, Nick finally realizes that what he is involved in isn't the lifestyle that he thought it was previously, and he tries to correct his mistake.
The theme of illusion versus reality is implied throughout the book. Fitzgerald once wrote, "That's the whole burden of this novel the loss of those illusions that give such color to the world so that you don't care whether things are true or false as long as they partake of the magical glory."(xv) For instance, Gatsby's obsession with Daisy masks the harsh reality that it was never going to happen. Gatsby even realizes that his illusion is greater than reality when he kisses her, and "forever wed[s] his unutterable visions to her perishable breath."(117) Gatsby seems to know that his idea and pursuit of Daisy is more rewarding than the actual attainment of her.
Another theme that is used is the American dream. Gatsby himself is a believer in the American dream of self-made success. During the book, we learn that he had created himself out of nothing, that his whole life is merely fiction. Gatsby remained fully committed to his dream of being socially accepted to the end. Therefore he never comprehends that his strive for success and social acceptance led him to his...
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