“The Great Gatsby “, besides being a great literary piece, is a metaphor for a whole society, the American society. “The party was over” (Fitzgerald), which signifies a level of prophetic vision within the American society and its history. An essential part of this American characteristic of the novel, and its historicity, is about the American Dream.
At the center of how Gatsby is a metaphor for a whole society, is the relationship between Europe, the already settled, which caused unsatisfaction and thus led to America, in which mercantilism and idealism are born and are a very important part of American History. In other words in American History, the human faculty of wonder is on the one hand, and the power and beauty of things is on the other. The book dramatizes this, directly in the life of Gatsby, how he changed his name and life from the already settled (Europe), for his dream (America). Gatsby’s dream is the American Dream, that one can acquire happiness through wealth and power.
Jay Gatsby had a love affair with the affluent Daisy, and knowing he couldn’t marry her because of the difference on their social status, he leaves her in order to create wealth and reach her economic standards. When he achieve this wealth, Gatsby buys a house that is across the bay to Daisy’s house, and throws immense and lavish parties, with the hope that Daisy would come to one of them. When he realizes this is very improbable, he starts asking various people from time to time if they know her. In this inquiry, he meets Jordan Baker, who tells him that Nick Carraway his neighbor is Daisy’s cousin. Nick agrees to invite Daisy to his house one afternoon, and then let him over. Later, in the Buchanans house, when Gatsby is determined to watch and protect Daisy: “How long are you going to wait? “All night if necessary”” (Fitzgerald 152) Jay shows that he cannot accept that the past is the past and he is sure that he can capture his dream with wealth and influence and that Daisy has loved only him for all this time. Gatsby doesn’t rest until his American dream is finally fulfilled, until Daisy is his. However it never becomes true and he ends dying because of it at the end. The dream both Gatsby and America had, was so unutterable that to a certain extent it was necessarily corruptible. They paid the price for trying to live in a dream World too long. They lost touch with reality, the old warm world, and created a new World, a world of dreams. This made them vulnerable, since if the dream was finished with, the world will be over.
The simple stereotype “The party was over”(Fitzgerald) signifies a level of prophetic vision in that the party is over because Gatsby is dead, because the prosperous sponsor of the party was no longer there. In American society the party is over when the Stock market crash takes place, and ends with the sponsor of the party, United States during the Roaring Twenties. The “Great Depression” is in the book, after Gatsby dies, and when the real Gatsby is what counts, his father comes to scene, and the only people that go to the funeral are the people that know who he really is. The party of material exaggeration, buying whatever you wanted if you had the money, trying to achieve happiness through material means, was over. The “Great Depression” hadn’t yet happened however, and the book forebodes it, at least to a certain extent. Since, the party symbolized the American society in the Roaring twenties, the diversity of colors, music, people, and in general the lively way of living. Thus, the stereotype “The party was over” (Fitzgerald) comes to be a prophetic vision, since it saw the American downfall because of this lavishness and bad use of resources during a decade, before it happened.
In conclusion, the stereotype “The party was over” is a prophetic vision of the “Great Depression”, which portrays the death of a society that is a metaphor to the tragedy of the Great Jay Gatsby, Believing that happiness can be attained with wealth and power.