The Great Gatsby

Topics: F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Jay Gatsby Pages: 2 (1110 words) Published: July 29, 2015
‘The Great Gatsby’ – Discuss the way Fitzgerald has used symbols to represent his main ideas in The Great Gatsby Written by F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1925, The Great Gatsby depicts life in the 1920s (Jazz Age) portraying the emptiness, wealth, carelessness, immorality and decadence of the era. As a brief and generalised understanding, The Great Gatsby may be portrayed as a forbidden romantic love story between the characters of Jay Gatsby and Daisy Buchanan however; there is a deeper, underlying context that suggests other various themes. The 1920s marked a time of post-war economic growth and the unsustained desire to attain The American Dream. Originally, The American Dream consisted of the idea that an individual was able to achieve success regardless of family history or social status, however, in the novel F. Scott Fitzgerald describes the 1920s as the corruption of the American Dream. The values drastically change and no longer result in equality. People live in an illusion that wealth and materialism equates happiness and ultimately, discrimination between the social hierarchies continues. F. Scott Fitzgerald ultilises the character of Nick Carraway as the narrator to capture the harsh world he observes around him. In the novel, Fitzgerald remarkably presents the main themes of The Great Gatsby through dominant yet subtle symbols including the Green Light, The West and East Egg and The Valley of Ashes and through the use of the eyes of TJ Eckelberg. Prominently, one of the most important symbols utilised in the novel is the Green Light. The Green Light is located at the end of the East Egg dock and faces directly towards the West Egg, where Jay Gatsby seems to constantly reach out to. In chapter 1, Gatsby’s character is introduced by Nick Carraway as a dark silhouette reaching out towards the light in the darkness, "he gave a sudden imitation that he was content to be alone – he stretched his arms together toward the water in a curious way...I could have...
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