The Great Gatsby
A renowned American author F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote one of the most exceptional pieces of literary work in his 1925 book The Great Gatsby.
The author set his book in the summer period of 1922 in the cities of New York and Long Island North Shore. This novel is a chronicle of an era in which Fitzgerald had coined up the name “Jazz Age” as a depiction of himself. The chaos and shock that were reminiscent of the 1st World War had left America to enjoy unprecedented levels of success and prosperity which trickled down to common forks. The novel which gained unrivaled acclamation and attention after its release has been hailed by critics and fans alike as one of the greatest American Novels of all time (Bruccoli, 6).The story line follows the events that happened to Jay Gatsby who was a World War 1 veteran. Before Jay went to war, he had fallen in love with Daisy Faye a lady who worked as a local debutante.
However, since Gatsby a name he had chosen for himself was your everyday farm boy from the Midwest, this did not make matters any better in his quest to garner the wealth needed so that he could marry Daisy who was of a high class society. During the war, Daisy got married and this obviously left Gatsby heartbroken. Gatsby in an attempt to win her back takes full advantage of the New York bootlegging operation where he makes tones of money and life for himself. Through the money he amasses in this operation, he buys himself a magnificent mansion and throws lavish house parties to guests who barely know him and vice versa. The author uses Nick as the narrator who is Gatsby’s neighbor, went to school with Daisy’s husband Tom and is also a cousin to Daisy.
The author delays giving most of the information regarding Gatsby and only does it in the latter part as the story goes on. Fitzgerald presents the main character in this story as an enigmatic host of prestigious parties in his mansion where lavish parties are organized every week. As the author has put it on the novel “people were not invited they went there” (Fitzgerald, 36). The author uses the mansion to depict Gatsby’s success and how he invented his character through his own dreams by acquiring it. Gatsby in the beginning of this novel is described as a personality who threw posh parties which were attended by the high and mighty in society. Some of the guests who came to these parties never even knew him and never even met their host in the parties.
Fitzgerald uses the mansion in this novel to represent the state in which Gatsby now finds himself in. it is a symbol of wealth and it stands for the dreams that Gatsby had always longed for. In comparing the mansion with his, the narrator lived in a house that “squeezed between two huge places that rented for twelve to fifteen thousand a season”. This was in grim contrast to “Gatsby’s mansion” as it was known which the author in comparison to his own house describes his house as “an eyesore” (Fitzgerald, 9). The sociology of wealth which was characteristic in the 1920’s is also highlighted by the author using the lavish life that Gatsby now lives in contrast to his past life.It was in one of those parties in Gatsby’s mansion that Nick whom the author uses to tell the story closely examines the character of Gatsby.
Nick is afforded the rare opportunity of attending one of the lavish parties in Gatsby’s mansion. This invitation was very rare since it was an uncommon occurrence for people to be invited into Gatsby’s mansion and they would invite themselves. The differences in the lives that Nick and Gatsby live is clearly highlighted by Nick as he confesses that he felt out of place in Gatsby’s mansion. It is in this mansion that Nick comes face to face with guests who instead of enjoying the party, are busy exchanging rumors of how Gatsby acquired his wealth. The rumors range from Gatsby being once a German spy to him being a coldblooded murderer.The author uses the mansion to depict the glamour and pomp of the 1920’s into focus.
The author uses it to show how the upper class during that time lived a lavish life. Although Gatsby lives in the garishly ostentatious part of West Egg he finds it necessary to invite East Egg resident a less posh area to his parties. This as the author tries to highlight is that although he has outward riches his character is still the same. Although these groups are highly volatile of each other, they find it easy to interact at Gatsby’s mansion. In describing his encounter with Gatsby, Nick points out that he noticed “one of those rare smiles” which he goes further to describe that it had an “eternal reassurance” quality in it (Fitzgerald, 40).
Although Gatsby lives in an elegant posh mansion most of the aspects in his life are probably quite a miss. Gatsby organizes parties for guests whom he barely knows and Nick finds it fascinating that he is invited to one of these parties in which invitations are rare and the fact that his social status does not match with the posh lifestyle that his neighbor lives in. Although the mansion is a reality for Gatsby his character and class does not change with his acquisition of this elegant mansion. The fact that he still invites people from lower classes which do not get along with the upper class clearly shows that although he has material possessions in the mansion he cannot be able to buy class.