The title of The Great Gatsby – a masterpiece written by  F. Scott Fitzgerald has presented the readers with the main irony of the novel: he was James Gatz, not Jay Gatsby, nor was he great. Through Nick Carraway’s narrative, James Gatz, or later on Jay Gatsby represents everything that is pathetic and deceitful, yet surprisingly genuine. During the novel, Gatsby’s “greatness” is portrayed through several of his qualities, such as his purely unconditional love for Daisy Buchanan and his interminable will. Although to Nick, Gatsby represents the truth and light in the darkness dominating over the grandiose New York society in the 1920’s, the sole purpose for all of his greatness – Daisy and his desire to fit in to the established upper class represents has corrupted his greatness. Despite the purely romantic nature of his dream, Gatsby has committed criminals activities in order to attain it. As a result, even though Gatsby is “great” for his dream, his “romantic readiness”, and his “extraordinary gift for hope”, it is also reasonable to say he was a mere criminal who has done despicable things.


     One of main reasons for Nick to perceive Gatsby as “great” despite his obvious flaws was the existence and nature of Gatsby’s dream. Indeed, ever since his youth, his American dream has been pure with motivation and ambition being the main forces behind. During a time of moral decay and excessive hedonism, Gatsby seemed to be the only one striving for the original American dream – the pursuit of happiness, not materialistic wealth; indeed  the nature of his dream was truly genuine and romantic. This dream is what allows Gatsby to be “gorgeous”, to have “some heightened sensitivity to the promises of life”. It does not seem to matter whether Gatsby is living for the past or the present; it only matters that he has a purpose for living. This has caused him to be clearly differentiated from Tom and Daisy – people who have had everything in life completely laid out for them life has become purposeless and mundane. Furthermore, although one can draw a number of similarities between the characters of Gatsby and Myrtle, Gatsby’s genuine pursuit for pure love was clearly different from Myrtle’s motives of pure desire for wealth, status, and sexual pleasure. Also, Gatsby is different from Jordan Baker, although they both have dreams, Gatsby’s dream was extremely idealist and romantic, while Jordan’s dream, or purpose – to win her golf tournaments, was clearly practical. Finally, Gatsby, although a member of the West Eggs, is clearly different from the people at his parties. He did not seek to flaunt his wealth; instead, his conspicuous spending were to serve his efforts of getting to meet Daisy again. It is clear that the existence and nature of Gatsby’s romantic dream has separated him from the "foul dust [that] floated in the wake of his dreams.", as put in Nick’s words. Although Gatsby has been seeking to acquire more and more wealth, this was to serve his purpose of finding true happiness, which is the original goal of the American Dream.

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     Another main aspect that make Gatsby “great” is arguably his eternal dream ever since his youth and his determination and ability to turn it into a reality. Witnessing the extent to which Gatsby has gone in order to attain his dream, Nick has observed Gatsby to be “the son of God”.  Gatsby  has been wishing to transform himself into his ideal figure – a figure of status and wealth, and he had succeeded. While his dream is certainly impractical and almost quixotic, Gatsby shows a remarkable work ethic and determination that should be appreciated.  His dream seems ...

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