Essays on The Great Gatsby

Essays on The Great Gatsby

The story of The Great Gatsby is a very symbolic piece of literature. This book, written in the 1920s, was a symbol of the time. The Great Gatsby outlines the newly acclaimed riches, the fads, and technology that had been introduced in the modernized 1920s. Fitzgerald uses characterization and symbolism to display materialism versus the American dream. The characters of Gatsby and Tom outline this idea of old money and new money.

In the story of The Great Gatsby, Tom is portrayed as an open book. The reader learns how he is an arrogant, malicious man, that loves to flaunt his money just because he can. It is made clear that Tom is having an affair with Myrtle, along with the fact that Daisy knows it. Fitzgerald makes Tom a symbol of new money. Being born rich makes Tom arrogant. Adding to the fact that Tom never holds any morals and never treats anyone how he wants to be treated. This is shown by Fitzgerald’s display of materialism. Tom does everything and anything he wants. He buys whatever he wants to buy, and does whatever he wants to do. That is what makes him happy. This means that Tom without his money would be a train wreck. Tom uses his old money as a wall. He uses his money to give people a picture of a strong, tough man. For example, in chapter 2 when Mrs. Wilson continues to say Daisy’s name, Tom gets so mad that he breaks Mrs. Wilson’s nose because he does not believe that Mrs. Wilson has any right to mention Daisy's name. If Tom did not have the wealth that he inherited, he would not have punched Mrs. Wilson because he would’ve had nothing to give him strength. But, as Gatsby falls more and more in love with Daisy, Tom realizes that he wants Daisy to be his person and he wants to do anything and everything to make sure that Gatsby doesn't take Daisy away from him.

The Great Jay Gatsby is a character who was originally a mystery to all. Gatsby grew up in an impoverished home in North Dakota. Gatsby gained so much wealth, and nobody really knew how. This added to the character of Gatsby. Nick had served with Gatsby in the war but did not normally talk with him or converse with him. When Nick gets invited to one of Gatsby's extravagant parties, the reader begins to see part of who Gatsby is. As the story progresses, the reader learns about how Gatsby is still just a normal person. Gatsby has achieved everything he wants in life. He can do and buy anything he wants, but he realizes that with Daisy, he cannot do the same thing. Everything in Gatsby's life has been an attempt to try and win back Daisy. Gatsby wanted to become rich so that he could be the man that she wanted. We learn how all these extravagant parties are for Daisy. At the end of chapter 1, Nick sees Gatsby at the edge of a lake. “Involuntarily, I glanced seaward and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away”. This green light that Gatsby sees across the bay symbolizes the dream that Gatsby has of being with Daisy. The color green in this book symbolizes growth and Gatsby sees this green light across the bay as hope that one day he will eventually achieve this dream.

Tom and Gatsby are two very different characters. Tom represents an arrogant bully, that uses solely his money to get what he wants. Gatsby is shown as a man who is extremely optimistic man that always tries to turn his dreams into reality.

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We've found 132 essays on The Great Gatsby

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The Great Gatsby: East Egg versus West Egg

East Egg versus West Egg East Egg and West Egg are “identical in contour and separated only by a courtesy bay … They are not perfect ovals … but their physical resemblance must be a source of perpetual wonder to the gulls that fly overhead. …

The Great Gatsby
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Pages 4
Conflicts in the Great Gatsby

Individual vs. society Gatsby vs. the American society in 1920s From Nick’s perspective, Gatsby might have made vast fortune by illegal means and is capable of behaving like an aristocrat, he is still not respected as the ‘old money’ from East Egg; Gatsby’s mansion, his …

The Great Gatsby
Words 103
Pages 1
A Critical Analysis of The Great Gatsby

The beginning of the 20th century was marked with substantial changes including the industrial revolution, WWI and the gradual diversification of moral views as opposed to the uniformity imposed by the clericalism that had dominated the American society from its conception. The dynamically changing morality …

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Sky High

Good morning teacher and fellow students. The idea that we continue on as we are: unchanged, unchanging is unbelievably illogical. In a time and world where things are constantly changing, it is impossible to be in existence without being affected by the process of change. …

Human NaturePsychologyThe Great Gatsby
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Apperance vs Reality In the Great Gatsby

The roaring twenties were the times of higher wages, new technologies and extravagant parties to celebrate after the devastating war. It was the time of great economic prosperity and many people became rich and wealthy. With this all happening many people lived in an illusionary …

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Words 106
Pages 1
The Great Gatsby Chapter 1-5 Summaries

In Chapter 1, the narrator introduces himself as Nick Carraway and talks about himself and his father. He describes himself as tolerant but fails to realizes his views are very biased and speaks with pity to those who “haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had,” …

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Chapters 4-6 of The Great Gatsby

Chapters 4-6 of The Great Gatsby revealed a lot about Jay Gatsby to the readers. The first thing to jump out at me was that Jay Gatsby’s real name is actually James Gatz. Also, Gatsby revealed that his parents were originally from the mid-western city …

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Words 330
Pages 2
Empress Theodora Eulogy

Then our beloved Empress rose in political power and married Emperor Justinian. Some people called our Empress lazy and a burden, but she wasn’t close to that. She was the empress hat defended and protected our nation, and influenced Emperor Justinian into keep Our nation …

CultureReligionThe Great GatsbyTragedy
Words 236
Pages 1
My Most Embarrassing Moment

My Most Embarrassing Moment Some things are easier to remember, than to forget. I can remember my most embarrassing moment as if it happened yesterday. I’ve tried to forget about this moment all my life, but it just never goes away. I can think back …

ClassroomThe Great Gatsby
Words 818
Pages 4
Сharacter Of Gatsby In “The Great Gatsby”

Every man wants to be considered great in the eyes of his peers, but it is important to remember what greatness truly means. There are thousands of ways to define the word “great,” but I have my own definition of the word. A great man …

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Pages 4
The Great Gatsby from Daisy’s Point of View

Daisy’s point of view In this chapter of The Great Gatsby, starts out with Tom and Nick on the train, their way to New York City. On their way Tom makes them get off of the train so that Nick can meet his “girl”. Tom …

FictionThe Great Gatsby
Words 550
Pages 3
Reaction Paper Sample

Reaction Paper #4: The Prince and the Pauper Monica Sharma I read The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain and enjoyed reading about a wealthy prince name Edward Tudor and a pauper name Tom Canty trading lives with each other and experiencing how it …

LiteratureMark TwainThe Great Gatsby
Words 1066
Pages 5
The Great Gatsby – Violent Situations

In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s, The Great Gatsby, the violent situations that occur reveal the true personalities and feelings of many of the characters. To begin, Tom and Myrtle are discussing whether Myrtle has the right to mention Daisy’s name and Myrtle annoyingly repeated “Daisy”. This …

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Words 492
Pages 2
The Advantage of Wealth

Since time immemorial, it has been a common notion that wealth defines a person’s status in the society. It is usually associated with the amount of material things that a person owns that wealth is determined. This essay would try to evaluate the advantage of …

CultureLiteratureThe Great Gatsby
Words 69
Pages 1
Importance of Point of View in the Great Gatsby

n novels containing interweaving plot and varying scenes, the author’s selection of point of view becomes a primary factor in its impact and effectiveness. The Great Gatsby is such a novel which demonstrates this point most evidently. While Fitzgerald’s decision to view the plot through …

HumanThe Great Gatsby
Words 454
Pages 2
Technique of Indirect Characterization in The Great Gatsby

There is no single work of literature in the world, where a full, completed characterization of a person would be, no matter if he/she is the main character, or does not play any role in the novel at all. The main idea is to develop …

CharacterizationThe Great Gatsby
Words 336
Pages 2
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Edward Albee’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf” is a play based on illusions. Each character lives their life behind some sort of illusion whether it’s based on their past, their marriage or their whole life. Each illusion presents a view into their personal lives and …

LiteratureThe Great Gatsby
Words 562
Pages 3
The Great Gatsby: What Makes Daisy So Attractive?

“Her voice is full of money” (Fitzgerald, 120). This quote, said by important personality Gatsby, explains Daisy’s character and demeanor. Daisy Buchannan is one of the main characters in the novel The Great Gatsby. The wife of Tom Buchannan and the dream of Jay Gatsby, …

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I Survived the Sinking of the Titanic

I survived the sinking of The Titanic, 1912 April fourteenth at seven fifteen a. m. in a first class suite on B Deck. We meet George and his eight-year-old sister Phoebe. They are returning to America after visiting London and the surrounding area with their …

The Great GatsbyTitanicTragedy
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Eulogy of Mrytle WIlson

Wilson is more affected by Myrtle’s death than he lets on. Therefore, I wrote this eulogy as Wilson for Myrtle to show the depth and complexity of their relationship. I tried to show Willow’s feelings for Myrtle, rather than a ‘spiritless’ man as depicted through …

LoveThe Great GatsbyTragedy
Words 1255
Pages 6
Motif of Eyes in the Great Gatsby

The motif of eyes in The Great Gatsby Eyes are the gateway to the soul, or so the old saying goes. People’s eyes can convey their feelings – their anger, excitement, or worry. Eyes can also convey subconscious emotions, revealing hidden depths that might not …

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Words 832
Pages 4
Weather In the Great Gatsby

People’s feelings and emotions are often changed or affected by the weather. There are also many stereotypes that go along with the weather. For example on rainy days people often feel sad or on very hot days people often have short tempers and can become …

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Pages 4
Political context of The Great Gatsby

America during 1920s enjoyed a consummate historical period – so called the ‘Economic Boom’. Consequently, more and more people became wealthy. This resulted in dramatic changes in American social structure as there was a huge increase in the middle classes. People’s obsession over their wealth …

IndividualismThe Great GatsbyWealth
Words 537
Pages 3
Literary Luminary

Week#1: Literary Luminary “The Great Gatsby” Chapter 1/2 “You look at him sometimes when he thinks nobody’s looking. I’ll bet he killed a man. ” (Fitzgerald 44) -This passage shows the thoughts that run among all of Gatsby’s guests. Who is he? Where did he …

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Words 503
Pages 3
The Great Gatsby Chapter 4

Gatsby Chapter 4 essay How does Fitzgerald tell the story in Chapter 4? Throughout the chapter Fitzgerald uses a variety of different disciplines to tell the story of Gatsby, Nick and the other characters. In chapter 4, Fitzgerald uses narrative voice to portray Gatsby’s mysterious …

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Pages 4
Significance of Social Status in the Great Gatsby

Significance of Social Status in The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby may appear to be a simple tragic romance; however, within the text, Fitzgerald identifies and defines social gaps and importance of wealth. He also presents women within a very separate …

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Words 324
Pages 2
The Great Gatsby Chapter 8 1

The Great Gatsby Chapter 8 1. The author interrupts the story to show the understanding of how Gatsby’s dream developed. Gatsby fell in unconditional love with Daisy the moment he met her and desired her deeply, “He knew Daisy was extraordinary, but he didn’t realize …

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Words 980
Pages 4
Corruption in The Great Gatsby

It is a conventionally held belief that opulence has noxious effects on one’s character. However, In the asses, many Americans in the East thought quite the contrary. F. Scott Fitzgerald renowned novel, The Great Gatsby, takes the reader back into such an era through the …

The Great Gatsby
Words 944
Pages 4
Modernism Illustrated in the Great Gatsby

Modernist literature emerged during the end of the 19th century (1890-1950) and was perceived as a reaction to an increasingly industrialized and globalized world. It was mostly brought on by the damaging effects of WWI, WWII, and the Great Depression. People lived in an ever …

ModernismNovelRacismThe Great Gatsby
Words 1081
Pages 5
Great Gatsby: Dream Realization

Everyone has dreams, some are big and some are small but everyone has one. For Jay Gatsby; dreams can seem close but impossible to obtain. Jay Gatsby is a confusing man to understand, but his dream is very clear to everyone; he wants Daisy’s love …

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Words 1034
Pages 5

Find extra essay topics on Essays on The Great Gatsby by our writers.

Midwest native Nick Carraway (Tobey Maguire) arrives in 1922 New York in search of the American dream. Nick, a would-be writer, moves in next-door to millionaire Jay Gatsby (Leonardo DiCaprio) and across the bay from his cousin Daisy (Carey Mulligan) and her philandering husband, Tom (Joel Edgerton). Thus, Nick becomes drawn into the captivating world of the wealthy and -- as he bears witness to their illusions and deceits -- pens a tale of impossible love, dreams, and tragedy.… MORE
Originally published

April 10, 1925


Jay Gatsby, Nick Carraway, Daisy Buchanan, Tom Buchanan, Myrtle Wilson, Jordan Baker




F. Scott Fitzgerald


Text: The Great Gatsby at Wikisource

Adaptations: The Great Gatsby (2013), The Great Gatsby (1974), The Great Gatsby (2000)

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