Everyone wants to be successful in life, but most often people take the wrongways to get there. In the 1920s the American Dream was something thateveryone struggled to have. A spouse, children, money, a big house and a carmeant that someone had succeeded in life.
A very important aspect was money andsuccess was determined greatly by it. This was not true in all cases however.The belief that every man can rise to success no matter what his beginnings. JayGatsby was a poor boy that turned into a very wealthy man, but did he live theAmerican Dream? Money is actually the only thing that Gatsby had a lot of. JayGatsby tries to live the life of The American Dream, but fails in his battle.From his early years Gatsby has his eye one Daisy and throughout his life he isdeeply in love with her, but he never marries or even has a life with her.Another one of Gatsbys goals in life was to be an extremely successful, justlike his model Dan Cody, but that plan ends up failing as well.
As a part ofwhat Dan Cody taught him, Gatsby attempted to go into business with a man namedMeyer Wolfsheim, but failed at that also. For such a long time Gatsby has hadhis eye on Daisy and has been in love with her, but this does not. Gatsby hasalways gazed at the green light on Daisys porch.
Jordan Baker says,Gatsbybought that house so that Daisy would be across the bay.(page 79). The colorgreen is traditionally a symbol of hop and youth and that is what Gatsby ishoping to find beyond it. When Gatsby and Daisy meet, he tells her about how hehas watched the green light that burns at the end of her dock.
For so long thatlight has been a symbol of his dream, of something he has wanted more than lifeitself. Gazing at it so much, Gatsby must have believed that if he could onlyhave Daisy he would be eternally happy. In chapter four he suddenly has her andthe light is just a light again.
It doesnt seem that Daisy could ever be aswonderful as Gatsbys dream of her. Dreams, sadly for Gatsby are most oftenlonged for rather than made a reality. Gatsby never ends up getting with Daisyhis shining star in life, much of what he lived for. In his younger years,Gatsby worked on the south shore of Lake Superior earning room and board bydigging clams and fishing for salmon.
One day he saw the beautiful yacht of themillionaire Dan Cody and borrowed a rowboat to warn Cody of an impending storm.Cody took the seventeen-year-old boy on as a mate, and secretary. When Codydied, he left the boy, now Jay Gatsby, a legacy of $25,000. Unfortunately Gatsbynever got the amount of money that he deserved because Codys wife stole mostof it. On the day that he saved Dan Cody’s yacht, he must have seen anembodiment of everything he wanted. In a strange sort of way Gatsby neverbelieved that he was just James Gatz.
He had an idea of what he wanted to be.Gatsby had an image of himself, to which he gave the name Gatsby. From the daythat he met Dan Cody he decided to dedicate his life to the development of theidea of himself that existed in his head. Although he was successful at makingmoney in business, Jay Gatsby was never able to become a man as successful asDan Cody who had everything he wanted in life. The experiences with Codyhowever, helped Gatsby to later pursue a job in business. We are introduced tothe business side of Gatsby in the person of Meyer Wolfsheim.
Wolfsheim ismodeled on the real-life figure of Arnold Rothstein, the man who helped fix the1919 World Series. Through Wolfsheim, we learn about Gatsby’s connections with ashady underworld, and we begin to understand for the first time where Gatsby’smoney comes from. The discovery of Gatsby’s unsavory business dealings may tainthis dreams question his “greatness.
” Gatsbys involvement with MeyerWolfsheim caused his whole idea of the American Dream to be shattered. Withthese shady business dealings Gatsby could never succeed in life. A combinationof bad luck, not being outgoing, and getting into bad dealings leads to JayGatsbys failure at the American Dream.
Even though he had the money and housethat he needed in order to have Daisy fall in love with him, Gatsby had no ideaof how to let her know he was in love. If Gatsby had tried to be more likehimself than he possibly would have had a greater chance of succeeding in life.For Gatsby truly did fail. At a point of his life when he had a minimal amountaccomplished, he was shot in cold blood by Tom Buchannan while taking his firstswim ever.
After all the American Dream is not for everyone in life, many didnot succeed at fulfilling it in the 1920s when is was so popular. Maybe notall poor men are meant to magically have success in life?English Essays