The Great Gatsby Essay

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The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is more than a story about a mans love for a women, but rather a mans will to achieve greatness as he perceived. Jay Gatsby was a man driven by money and power. He was a man with a vision, a vision to succeed in life.
As a child, Jay Gatsby grew up on a farm. He saw his parents as nothing but lethargic farmers. Gatsby knew exactly what he didnt want to be and that was like his parents. They were people who were content with who they were. Gatsby, on the other hand, was the exact opposite. He wanted to move on. Jay Gatsby wanted to be someone special, someone with prestige and someone definitely with money. Gatsby developed a self improvement plan to help him flourish as a young man. His plan detailed dumbbell exercises, studying electricity, practicing elocution and studying needed inventions. Even his parents knew he was driven. His father said:
“Jimmy was bound to get ahead.. He always had some
resolve like this or something. Do you notice what hes
got about improving his mind? He was always great for
that” (182).
The structured drive let Gatsby prevail in his endeavors. However, there are some things people just cant get away from.
James Gatsby desperately wanted to achieve success in life. However, it is difficult to flourish with a background like Gatsbys. So to escape his past, he changed his name at the age of 17 from James Gats to Jay Gatsby. Nonetheless, changing his name only did so much for him. Gatsby ended up living a life of lies because of his hidden identity. Nobody really knew Gatsby. So in the absence of peoples knowledge, they conjured up rumors.
“One time he killed a man who found out he was a nephew
of von Hindenburg and second to the devil”(65).
These were just some of the rumors about Gatsby. Some believed he was a German spy, while others thought he was a war hero. These were things he had to go through to reach his ultimate goal in life, which was to succeed.
After he left the farm, Gatsby went to work for a man named Dan Cody. Cody was a stable father figure for Gatsby. He looked up to Dan and saw what he really wanted to be. “Thats Dan Cody, old sport. Hes dead now. He used to be my best friend years ago”(98-99). Cody was a very wealthy man who made his fortune off mining. The most important thing Cody taught Gatsby was how to make money. However, Cody was an alcoholic and died at a fairly young age. Now that Gatsby obtained the know how of making money, all he had to do was go out and make it.
Gatsby soon after met a enchanting young lady named Daisy. Daisy was very beautiful and came from a wealthy background. Nonetheless, Daisys background was the one thing preventing them from marriage. Gatsby lacked the financial support to marry Daisy. He loved her with all his heart and desperately wanted to win her back. This was just another driving factor in the life of Jay Gatsby. He wanted her more than anything in the world, even more than money. However, money was a necessity if he desired to marry daisy.
It took Gatsby five years to obtain the wealth he though he needed to win back Daisy. He also wanted to put himself in a position where she could notice his fortunes without him forcing them upon her. So Gatsby purchased an exquisite house directly across the bay from Daisys. He would do anything to regain the love of Daisy, even use people. For example, he became close with his neighbor, Nick Carraway, because he was aware of the fact that nick and daisy were friends. Jay Gatsby had no moral boundaries in seeking his desires. Gatsby won Daisy back, but not the way he intended. She had already been married and couldnt get divorced. So in the end, his goal was never completely reached.
When he changed his name at the age of 17, Gatsby thought he left behind the desolate life he inherited from his parents. He appeared to be a dynamic character who achieved wealth, stature and prestige. Yet he died the barren static man that he never wanted to be.
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