Egotism in This Side of Paradise Literary Analysis

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Egotism: Education, Economics, and Enjoyment
A literary analysis of This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Micaela Berglund
3 White
10.26.13

The Turbo fluctuosa, a saltwater snail, spends its life climbing and falling from kelp; the snail continually builds itself up, simply to be knocked down again. This social pattern is likewise found in humans, who build up their egos to find what they need, lose it, and build again with little hesitation. Ego is built up in order to justify one’s education and. In addition, it can play a role in economic or financial proceedings. Along with education and economy, ego plays a role in the enjoyment of life, specifically the search to love and be loved. Egotism can play a profound role in one’s approach to education, economics, and social enjoyment, as exemplified by Amory Blaine in the novel This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald. This Side of Paradise is a thought-provoking novel set in the Jazz Age, which follows the life of a privileged boy, Amory Blaine, through his struggles into adulthood. In the beginning of the book, Amory travels to America with his unconventional, high status mother. He goes off to boarding school, then Princeton, and then overseas in World War I. He is an egotist, expressing himself constantly, from when he discusses literature with his fellow Princetonians, to when his love life crumbles in his penniless hands, to when his mother passes away while he is serving overseas. The novel points out his best and worst features, most specifically his inflated ego.
Ego plays a large part in Amory’s approach to education and knowledge, even starting from a young age. Amory always, consciously or otherwise, surrounds himself with scholarly people. He trades a public education for an elite preparatory school, and eventually moves on to higher education at Princeton. He is only truly happy when surrounded by educated people. As a boy, Amory imagines his future. In his

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