The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald: Analysis
The Great Gatsby is too concerned with conveying a picture of 1920s American society to have relevance to modern readers.
From what you have read of the novel so far and using relevant contextual information, give your response to the above view.
The USA in the 1920s is remembered as the ‘Roaring Twenties’, an age of new life, of hedonism and opportunity following the horrors the Great War. The decade is synonymous with wealth, materialism and unprecedented freedom. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby provides an insight into the exciting and prosperous lives of the American people as they embark on the limitless potential of the American Dream and therefore it conveys a picture of 1920s American society. With reference to the novel and the context of 1920s America, this analysis will consider to what extent The Great Gatsby is relevant to modern readers by drawing significant parallels between the characteristics of today’s society and the vibrant, pleasure-seeking society that the American people enjoyed in the 1920s. Perhaps the cornerstone of American society throughout the 1920s was money and the limitless possibility and freedom that it yielded. The laissez-faire economic policy of the USA’s Republican government allowed for an economic boom which saw the development of the motor car by Henry Ford create jobs, wealth and the freedom to travels across America. In essence, people wanted to forget the hardship of the First World War and with new money America’s hedonistic 1920s society was born. This renewed wealth is epitomized by Jay Gatsby, who rises from being a ‘penniless young man’ to being an elusive tycoon, known more for his extravagant parties rather than his endearing personality. Early in his lifetime Gatsby created the concept of what he wanted to be when he grew up, and refused to let go of this dream as long as he lived – ‘So he invented just the sort of Jay Gatsby that a seventeen-year-old boy would be likely to