I thought that The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, was a very well written and interesting book. I thoroughly enjoyed the overwhelming amount of imagery the book provides to the reader. By telling the story of Jay Gatsby, Fitzgerald makes important points about the "American dream." Throughout the book Fitzgerald uses colors to help tell this story. The main idea that Gatsby represents is that no matter one's consequences, even if they are poor, one can become whatever they want. This is what Fitzgerald perceives as the American dream.
However, in order to accomplish his riches Gatsby had to commit crimes and do whatever he deemed necessary. Gatsby does all of this to acquire Daisy, the love of his life, because at first when he met her he was too poor to marry her and so he dedicated his whole life to achieving the social status and wealth which Gatsby thought would be acceptable for Daisy.
When Gatsby and Daisy reconnect at Nicks house Gatsby was, "consumed with wonder at her presence. He had been full of the idea so long, dreamed it right through to the end, waited with his teeth set, so to speak, at an inconceivable pitch of intensity. Now, in the reaction, he was running down like an overwound clock". (92) This passage shows how Daisy represented wealth and fame; in some ways she also represents the American dream to Gatsby because all of the hard work that he did was for her. One of the
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examples of how committed Gatsby is to achieving her love is when he fires all his servant because Daisy did not like them, "So the whole caravansary had fallen in like a card house at the disapproval in her eyes." (114) Gatsby also makes the decision of covering for Daisy when she hit Mrs. Wilson, "Was Daisy driving?' 'Yes,' he said after a moment, 'but of course I'll say I was.' (143) After seeing all the things Gatsby is willing to do, Fitzgerald makes it clear to the reader that wealth and riches corrupt people. In the end Gatsby dies while protecting Daisy.
At the end of the book Nick makes an important point. "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us." (180) This "green light" represents the American dream for Gatsby. Everyday Gatsby would be motivated by this "green light." The reader first encounters this "green light" when Nick explains the first time he saw Gatsby, "He stretched out his arms towards the dark waters in a curious way, and, far as I was from him, I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward-and distinguished nothing except a single green light". (21) This green light was on Daisy's dock and is a reminder of her to Gatsby.
Fitzgerald uses grey in the novel as a symbol of dullness. The second chapter is where the color grey is mentioned the most. When Nick and Tom visit the valley of ashes Nick describes it as a place, "where ashes take the forms of houses and chimneys and rising smoke, and finally, with a transcendent effort, or men who move dimly and already crumbling through the powdery air." (23) This is a big contrast to what the reader has seen in the book so far.
The color yellow is also a very reoccurring symbol in the book. Yellow represents the wealth and riches. Gatsby's car is also the color yellow and this car is the one that killed Mrs. Wilson. In some sense wealth corrupted Gatsby so the car can be seen as an object of corruption.
Blue is yet another color, which plays a part in the book. This color represents sadness and depression. At the end of the book Nick says some of his last words, "He had come a long way to this blue lawn, and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it." (180) The "blue lawn" Nick is talking about is Gatsby's depression and he had gotten so close to his goal.
The last color that is mentioned a lot is white, which represents innocence and kindness. It is most often mentioned with Daisy and other women. On page 117 when the reader first encounters Daisy's child, the narrator describes the scene, "Her face bent into the single wrinkle of the small white neck. 'You dream, you. You absolute little dream". This quote is a good example of how white is referred to as innocence in the book.
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A Personal Book Review of the Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. (2023, Mar 22). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/a-personal-book-review-of-the-great-gatsby-by-f-scott-fitzgerald/
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