Happiness is the key to a fulfilled life; but in many cases this pursuit is hard to attain. The American Dream is an etho of the United States. It is the ideal that prosperity will bring you life, liberty and happiness. To many, the American Dream has become the pursuit of material prosperity; it has brought inferior outcomes, more working hours for big investments and less hours to enjoy their success. The term, rags to riches is usually intertwined with the ideal of the American Dream. When the working poor seek a prosperous life, they are lavished with riches, hence the term rags to riches. But can money really buy you happiness? In the novel The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gatsby’s erroneous plan of achieving his dream to be with Daisy, exemplifies the rags to riches trend of the pursuit of the American Dream.
In the novel, Fitzgerald emphasizes Gatsby’s luxurious life and later reveals that Gatsby was not always rich. Nick Carraway, the narrator of this book, foreshadows that Gatsby is hiding something from the past as he is skeptical about the stories that Gatsby tells throughout the book. There were always so many stories about Gatsby, it was hard for Nick to identify which ones were true and which ones were not. But he always found so much respect for Gatsby, They’re a rotten crowd,’ I shouted across the lawn. ‘?You’re worth the whole damn bunch put together . Although Nick looks up to this great Gatsby, we learn that Gatsby didn’t always live a great life. It was Gatsby’s father, a solemn old man, very helpless and dismayed, bundled up in a long cheap ulster against the warm September day . At the beginning of the book, Gatsby illustrates himself as a man from a wealthy family with a father who had died. But in the last chapter we are introduced to Mr. Gatz, Gatsby’s father, and we learn that Gatsby was born into a poor family, and fabricated most of his past. Within the last five years of his life, he was able to become successful enough to impress his one true love, Daisy Buchanan.
Gatsby was so focused on making Daisy happy, that he overlooked all the greatness that he already possessed. Using the money that Gatsby had obtained, he held extravagant parties for all of East and West Egg to enjoy, The lights grow brighter as the earth lurches away from the sun, and now the orchestra is playing yellow cocktail music, and the opera of voices pitches a key higher (40). Everyone was guaranteed a great night at Gatsby’s parties. But the primary purpose of these parties were to attract as much attention as possible, in hopes that one day a party would catch the eye of Daisy and entice her to attend. Gatsby always looked for Daisy at his parties. He didn’t socialize much with others though, he was too focused on grabbing Daisy’s attention. When he his feelings with Daisy, he wanted to take her away from her husband and relive the love they once had. Can’t repeat the past?’ he cried incredulously. ‘?Why of course you can’.
He still believed that no matter what obstacle came in his path, he we would be with Daisy. But his flashy new life and passionate heart, lead to his death. If Gatsby was not rich, he would not have been able to afford his yellow car, in which caused the accident of Myrtle Wilson’s death. Lovestruck Gatsby had allowed Daisy to drive his car that night; she had been the one to hit Myrtle. Gatsby was too in love with Daisy to blame her for the death. As a result, George Wilson, Myrtle’s husband, killed Gatsby. Gatsby would of done anything to keep Daisy safe. He had made himself a successful man, and yet he didn’t feel the greatness; he didn’t have the one thing he really wanted, Daisy.
But even Daisy, being the careless person she was, did not attend Gatsby’s funeral. I found myself at Gatsby’s side, and alone (164). Nick Carraway, the only man who Gatsby truly befriended, cared to be with his body everyday until his funeral. Only three people showed up to pay their respects to a man who gave all of West and East Egg so much. But it showed that even with his riches and big parties, he still didn’t have many friends.
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