• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

An exploration of themes used to portray an image of society in The Great Gatsby

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

An exploration of themes used to portray an image of society in 'The Great Gatsby'. Introduction: 'The Great Gatsby' by F. Scott Fitzgerald is set in the 1920's, an era commonly referred to as 'The Golden Twenties'. During this period, there was a high influx of immigrants, all in search of the so-called 'American Dream'. The novel is mainly set in a wealthy and successful area of the US, where the inhabitants prospered from the economic boom and lives a hedonistic lifestyle. However, a negative aspect of society is revealed as the author establishes a divide in society, the other side of society is shown too; the lower social classes who did not benefit from the economic boom and who seem to live a dull, hopeless life. The author presents a distorted image of society at this time through various themes. Social classes: Context: - In the 1920's, society indulged in conspicuous consumption, which was the public display of material possessions in order to maintain a high social status amongst the community. ...read more.

Middle

as opposed to the negative, depressing descriptions of The Valley of Ashes (the word "ash" is repeated for emphasis, "foul", "unprosperous and bare"). Technology: Context: - During the 1920's, technology was developing rapidly, with advancements in medicine, transportation and manufacturing. - It is implied that society at the time was unable to keep up with the dramatic technological breakthroughs, as reflected by the car crash after Gatsby's party, which resulted in "a new coup�", "violently shorn of one wheel". Characters: -Myrtle is killed in a car accident, which may also show that society was unable handle the advancements in technology. This also reflects on the limitations of legislation at the time; it was only in 1939 that laws prohibiting drunk driving were introduced in the US. Structure: - The car crash after Gatsby's party may foreshadow the collapse of society and the economy in later years. Language: - Gatsby is said to have a Rolls-Royce, described as a "brisk yellow bug". The colour "yellow" may represent money, portraying Gatsby's immense wealth. This contrasts with "the dust-covered wreck of a Ford which crouched in a dim corner" in Wilson's garage. ...read more.

Conclusion

- Gatsby had to resort to a life of crime in order to live up to Daisy's expectations of social status which shows the materialism and corruption of society. Language: - A sense of disarray and panic is created after Tom punches Myrtle, "bloody towels", "a long broken wail of pain", reflects the disorder and chaos introduced to society as the level of crime rose. Religion: Context: - Following the rapid development of science and technology, many religious values were abandoned. The advancement of the entertainment business, especially in terms of music, literature, fashion and films led to the alteration of many social and moral views. Characters: - The eyes of Dr. T. J. Eckleburg watch over The Valley of Ashes- perhaps they are symbolic of God, who also watches over everyone? Alternatively, they may be representative of the shift of faith, from God to money and materialism in the 1920's. Conclusion: To conclude, the author depicts an image of a divided of society, torn apart by inequality and decaying social and moral values through several key themes in the novel. Perhaps it is the rapid advancement of technology as well as culture that caused society to splinter, leaving behind those who were unwilling and unable to reform. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Languages section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Languages essays

  1. What makes Gatsby great?

    Gatsby is essentially such an idealist, a dreamer that a romantic memory of the past was all he is living for, while to Nick, it is simply a "fragment of lost words that he [Gatsby] heard long ago". Gatsby sees Daisy as the embodiement of the past that can be

  2. A commentary on "THE GREAT GATSBY" by F. Scott Fitzgerald

    This is seen from the first page where there is ordinary language used to describe mundane things. Then there are words to describe unusual events such as "what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams...... in the abortive sorrows and shortwinded elations of men".

  1. Effects of technology on transportation

    The reason for this problem was the exhaust produced from the combustion of fuel inside these AHP's which were having a high content

  2. Great Gatsby Summary

    gave him the name, Jay Gatsby o Made him an assistant o During the journeys with Cody, Gastby became accustomed to wealth and luxury o Cody died, Gatsby inherited 25,000 but could not collect b/c of Cody's mistress * Tom, Gatsby, Sloanes together, invites are exchanged o Gatsby's is sincere,

  1. Saudi Society and Technology advancement - how technology has altered society, not always for ...

    It is amazing how the human voice can carry and modulate in the stillness of the night. It used to sink in and seep through gently into ones whole being. All of a sudden this most pleasant sound turned into a jarring screech when the criers started using microphones and

  2. Great Gatsby Journals

    Instead, society would talk about how he bootlegs and sells alcohol, but drink it when he offered at the same time. They would talk about how bad of a person he was but still hundreds of people who did not even know him would come.

  1. How does Ibsen exploit dramatic techniques to explore the themes of repression and secrecy?

    sun to be "shining in at the glass door", he is using this dramatic component to suggest that such a duty is restricting Hedda. What's more, Hedda objects to "[opening] the verandah door" and the "flooded" sunlight. This not only indicates that she is disinterested in fertility and thus her

  2. Gender Inequality in The Quiet American

    When he asks her to do things it is not a question, it is an order. "Kiss me Phuong" (pg. 116), "You had better stay here tonight" (pg. 22), "Wait in the street" (pg. 21). However, Phuong and Fowler are just one example of gender inequality.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work