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The use of conventional and literary symbols in literature entails using objects to depict a different, deeper meaning in a story. Whereas conventional symbols are universally agreed upon to represent specific ideas, literary symbols largely depend on the context in defining the meaning they hold. For instance, a rose is a conventional symbol that is famously known to represent beauty and romance. ‘Night’ on the other hand is universally known to symbolize darkness or grief. However, depending on the context, the word ‘night’ may mean a state of loneliness or emptiness. Therefore, conventional symbols hold a universally pre-determined meaning while literary symbols largely depend on the context in establishing writers intentions.
In ‘The Story of an Hour, Kate Chopin presents a literary symbol at the beginning of the novel when she uses the phrase, ‘Heart Troubles.’ Chopin, later on, uses this symbol to relate Mrs. Malad’s physical heart problems to the character's emotional love problems in the marriage. In ‘A Rose for Emily,' the lime sprinkled around Miss Emily's house is a literary symbol used to present the true nature of the people of the town always to hide information. The lime is used to illustrate how far the town can go in keeping secrets. In ‘Battle Royal,' the blindfolded boxing matches are used to symbolize blind hatred upon black people. The blindfold shows the ignorance of the people in hating others by the color of their skin. Conclusively, symbolism has been used extensively in the novels to present a deeper meaning to situations. The real purpose and meaning of such symbols come to light as the books progress towards the end.
Symbolism; Conventional and Literary Symbols
According to Heidegger, Technology in our Current Age controls us and our approach to the world. For instance, the hydroelectric plant is constructed into the current of River Rhine. The hydraulic pressure turns the turbines which intern sets machines in motion which intern produce electricity which is supplied to different places. The current electric plant is not constructed into River Rhine; the river is dammed up into the power station. “The revealing that rules throughout modern technology has the character of a setting-upon, in the sense of a challenging-forth,” 321. The text reveals that the current technology controls our approach to the world.
An illustration that shows that the current technology controls us is that a person who determines felled timber in the woods is now ordered by the industry that is responsible for the production of commercial forests. The individual is made subordinate to the order ability of the system, which requires the paper to deliver it to both the magazine and newspaper industry. The people then demand magazines and newspapers. “He is made subordinate to the order ability of cellulose…,” 323. Also, “…man is challenged more originally than are the energies of nature, i.e., into the process of ordering...,” 323. Therefore, the current technology controls us.
In my daily life, I have been using cellphones to connect to the world. The gadget is light and therefore, portable. As a result, I can easily carry it to anywhere I go. I can easily connect to the world using social media, text messages, and even though calling. An individual can easily communicate with another using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, WeChat, Instagram, Google+, Skype, Snapchat, LinkedIn, as well as Skyrock. Besides, phones make it easier to send short messages or to make calls to different people across the globe. Also, one can access news and updates using Google services so long as the phone can access the internet. As a result, an individual gets updates about their surroundings and also communicates with different people across the globe.
How I use phones proves Heidegger’s thesis. According to Heidegger, the cellphones are used to connect people irrespective of the distance, separating them. Besides, cell phones are used to place and receive calls. Since cell phones maintain constant communications globally, it controls human beings.
Technology in our Current Age
The Destitution of Mark
Mark dreamt of being a physician like his father. He and his family lived in an upmarket estate where his mother owned several rental apartments. He went to school and excelled in his elementary academics. He later joined junior and high school where he gained a pass mark to study Medicine in a leading university in his city. At university, he recoded exemplary performance in both academics and sports. People in his sidelines always saw Mark as a young man with a bright future for himself and his country.
On graduating from the medical school, Mark joined a national hospital as an intern. The internship augmented his knowledge and allowed him to land his first job as an accidents and emergency doctor. He excelled in his career and saved many people who came to the emergency room in critical conditions. He was especially knowledgeable in handling road traffic accidents, heart attacks, and bodily injury resulting from the ingestion of poison. He worked in the hospital for five years where he met Joline and both fell in love. They dated for some time and Mark was transferred to a hospital located 20 miles from where she worked. However, the two stayed in contact and spent weekends together.
Due to his passion in intensive care, Mark went to the graduate school to do specialize in cardio-thoracic surgery. In the graduate school, he gained many accolades as a top student in innovation, he did a masters project in the prognosis of c
Creative Story Writing
From the book All Quiet on the Western Front by Erick Maria Remarque, it is clear that soldiers face numerous physical and mental challenges especially in active war. The author bases the plot of the book on the challenges and develops themes that attract the attention of the audience as they can relate.
Since the issue is on the lives of the soldiers, the relevant stakeholders could develop institutions that strictly deal with the soldiers issue after war. Army men like Paul Baumer could get professional assistance in which they can talk about the issues affecting their lives. The aim of the institutions is to provide a secluded environment in which the soldiers can have time alone. During this time the soldiers can learn to individually handle the psychological torture that comes with the war. Additionally, they can also physically recuperate from the physical exhaustion of an active war.
An in-depth analysis of the situation indicates that the soldiers face challenges of blending back into the society once the war is over. Paul Baumer for instance is not comfortable when he goes home while on leave. The issue is in the fact that there is no one who understands his traumas. Therefore, to make the lives of soldiers on leave easy, the community should take an active role in protecting the interests of the soldiers by giving them space. It is in this mentality that the institutions will play a significant role in maintaining a viable environment in which the soldiers can heal.
One of the major themes in the book is death. Paul Baumer watches as his friends/colleagues/classmates die one after the other. Handling the issue of death is a challenge to Paul as after this incidence he becomes reckless with his life. Focusing on this issue, the soldiers could receive counseling and guidance on how to deal with the matter. Prior counseling could prepare the soldiers for any eventuality and give them an ability of accepting death as part of the profession. In the process, the soldiers would come back to the society with the right mind frame that would allow them to blend in easily.
It is clear that the major issue in Paul Baumer’s life is that he had not experienced life before the exposure to war. The psychological trauma of a war adversely affected the positive outlook that young people have. Therefore, seeking ways in which the systems could enroll a bit older soldiers could give them an opportunity of experiencing life outside the army. Additionally, the enrollment of the youth is part and parcel of how patriotic people should act in a bid to protect the interests of the nation. Unfortunately, studies indicate that the young people fail to blend in with the society and become strangers. The government should therefore protect the interests of the soldiers by preparing them for life outside the army.
A deep analysis of the situation indicates that is Paul and his classmates never stayed too long in the battle they could not have faced so many challenges. Such an analysis leads to a conclusion that maybe if the systems could be set in a way that allows soldiers to take shorter periods in active battles it could protect them from the effects of war. Irrespective of the strategy requiring the input of numerous other stakeholders, it would guarantee the mental health of the soldiers. Additionally, the community would be part of the healing process that the ex-soldiers need as their life after war is quite precarious. Ultimately, the physical and psychological health of soldiers after war is dependent on how the community treats them.
The book is an intricate depiction of the physical and most especially the mental challenges that soldiers face while away from the battle ground. The fact that Paul Baumer the main protagonist joins the German army at early age shows that the war does not spare anyone. The book is effective in developing insights into the lives of soldiers and their cry for help. The book ends on a sad note where Paul also dies but states that the expression on his face showed an individual who was happy that everything had come to an end. The book gives the audience an opportunity to think of what they could do to help the soldiers.
The production elements used in A Doll’s House assist on the actors in bringing out the intended message. For Nora the main character, she is portrayed as an individual who does not take life seriously and prefers to play around. However, keen analysis of the character through production shows her performance is a spectacle and that she has dreams and ambitions she would want to achieve.
In an attempt to assert the message the production used Nora’s character to create a spectacle of the society. During the time women were supposed to settle in their marriages without seeking external pleasures. Therefore, Nora’s character is supposed to act in an exaggerated manner to drive in the point (1.145-600). The production also focuses on her dress code to complete the performance. She dresses in brightly colored and flowered dresses that assert her childish character.
Additionally, Torvald’s attitude towards her confirms her. The actor shows amusements from the childish behavior his wife portrays and fuels her action. The spectacle is evident in the fact that Nora’s petty attitude is contrary to what is expected of a woman with children. The element of spectacle is also evident in Dr Rank’s support of Nora’s childish tendencies. He agrees to attend one of her dances dressed in a big black hat (3.461-721). The fact that he is terminally ill and uses the phrase gives the production an opportunity of being ironical. He probably would not survive to get to the dance and would attend as a grim reaper. Making light of death is a spectacle as most people are afraid of anticipating death; however, from his mannerisms, Dr Rank has accepted it. Finally, production of the play lets the audience wonder whether or not Nora returns home after she leaves Tarvold and slams the door. The act is symbolic and a spectacle as it represents the end of that part of her life.
The producer focuses on the character’s performance to create an opportunity where the audience is left with a question. In the process, the fundamental aspect of the element is the performance of the actors.
A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen
In Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own, she illustrates a woman’s place in literature throughout history and in the modern day. She demonstrates women depicted in literature, how women write, and who woman are in the metanarrative of history. With woman struggling to fit themselves in a man-ruled profession and world, the thesis of her essay is that women must have a room of their own in order to write literature. In Karl Marx Communist Manifesto, his theory is that history, and the literature of history, has been of “class struggles” between the dominated and dominating class, and that the fruit of our existence is through the profit of our production and economic value. Through his theory in the Manifesto, Marx centralizes around the social relations, influence, and revolution of the people through class struggles and economic value, connecting to Woolf’s own statement that women should have a room of one’s own, referencing both economic and social freedom. Reading Virginia Woolf’s, A Room of One’s Own through the lens of class struggles and social change of Karl Marx exhibits how women, as the powerless minority, must reinvent their identity in the social order to free themselves from financial and social oppression, in order to accomplish intellectual freedom and creating their own voice in the narrative of history.
In A Room of One’s Own, Woolf demonstrates how women are perceived to be the minority throughout history, connecting to Marx own theory of social classes and relations. By examining both Marx and Woolf through a sociological lens, we examine how women are the powerless minority through social relations and economic status. In Marx’s theory he states, “In the earlier epochs of history, we find almost everywhere a complicated arrangement of society into various orders, a manifold gradation of social rank” (14). Society is built on a social rank with the elite and privileged on top, and the poor on the bottom. In Woolf’s essay, she establishes the social rank as men on top, and women on the bottom, demonstrating the social order through examples of women’s standing throughout history. Woolf counters the argument of why there is little to no important literary works written by women by examining the power and social construct of Shakespeare’s historical time period. In her text, she states, “But for my part, I agree with the deceased bishop, if such he was—it is unthinkable that any woman in Shakespeare’s day should have had Shakespeare’s genius. For genius like Shakespeare’s is not born among laboring, uneducated, servile people. It was not born in England among the Saxons and the Britons. It is not born to-day among the working classes. How, then, could it have been born among women whose work began, according to Professor Trevelyan, almost before they were out of the nursery, who were forced to it by their parents and held to it by all the power of law and custom?” (3.9). During Shakespeare’s time, literary geniuses were not born in the laboring, uneducated, servile people, and if they were, they always had the opportunity to better themselves. For a woman, however, their circumstances gave them a great disadvantage. Women were treated as nothing more than someone expected to serve and work, with no opportunity to rise above her circumstances. Considering their status in this historical time period, a woman would have never been able to compete with Shakespeare let alone rise above their social class to achieve any literary success.
This brings us back to Marx’s theory in the social order. Throughout his Communist Manifesto, Marx emphasis the relation between economic status to the social rank in society, with the Proletariat classified as the poor and the Bourgeoisie as the elite. The classification of the Proletariat and the Bourgeoisie is through the means of economic production, as the minorities as the exploited, and the elite are the exploiters. In his Manifesto, he states “The bourgeois sees his wife a mere instrument of production. He hears that the instruments of production are to be exploited in common, and, naturally, can come to no other conclusion that the lot of being common to all will likewise fall to the women” (25). The bourgeoisie only see women as a source of production for children, reinforcing Woolf’s own argument that women have always been held in servitude and where met with many disadvantages. Through the lens of Marx’s, women can never rise above their social standing because they are not even recognized as people. They are a mere ‘instrument’ and seen as nothing more than a source for reproductive labor, therefore a women’s economic production is worth nothing enlisting her at the bottom of the social order with no hope to rise in status.
In order to free themselves from the economic and social oppression, women must first recreate their identity in the social order. In Marx, he touches upon the strategies that minorities must use to exert social change and revolution. In his Manifesto, he states, “He [the bourgeois] has not even a suspicion that the real point aimed at is to do away with the status of women as mere instruments of production” (25). In his text, Marx concludes that the only way for women to be free and recognized as people, instead of property, is by liberating themselves from the social constraints and contradiction of class struggle. In Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own, she touches upon this liberation of women from the social order, reinventing themselves as writers in history, by stating, “[…] a woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction…” (1.1). For a woman to have “a room of her own” represents both economic and social freedom to do as she pleases. As seen in Marx, the economic production of women has never been worth anything, and by changing this social constraint, women are then allowed the means to earn money for her labors, and the freedom to use it how she pleases instead of giving it to her husband. Woolf also emphasizes the intellectual freedom that comes with a room of their own. In her text she states, “Intellectual freedom depends upon material things. Poetry depends upon intellectual freedom. And women have always been poor, not for two hundred years merely, but from the beginning of time. Women have had less intellectual freedom than the sons of Athenian slaves. Women, then, have not had a dog’s chance of writing poetry” (6.14). Woolf argues that the social and economic equality for the sexes is not only necessary to live but also necessary for intellectual freedom. One cannot have the capacity to be creative and intellectually free if one does not have anything to call their own. Women must first enact social change, disrupting their place in the social order, in order to create their own literature and become a part of the meta-narrative.
In order to obtain true freedom, women must recreate their identity in the social order as people of equal value and standing as men. Having a room of their own grant’s women the social, economic, and intellectual freedom, exerting the first step to social change and reinventing their identity within the social order. In the social class struggle between man and women, men have always been the ruling factor in the metanarrative of history, often leaving women out of their victories of enforcing the superiority of men. In order to change the meta-narrative of male superiority, Woolf urges women to write within her essay. She emphasizes the power and necessity women have to write and have their voices heard in the meta-narrative of history. In order to reinvent their identity from a classification of servitude and instruments to be used, women must enact social change, revolutionize themselves by creating their own space, expanding on their own intelligence, and asserting themselves in history through literature.
"…I cut it out and pasted it into an album where I keep things that amuse me…" p.15. Meursault portrayed this strange character when he met a Kruschem Salt advertisement. He cut the section of the paper containing the advert and place it in the album. The album is where he keeps things that amuse him in the article. The character is strange since only a few people can do that.
“…and asked me if I wasn't disgusted by the way the old man served his dog. I answered: No," p.19. Salmon was mistreating his dog and calling it names. Besides, he pulled his dog up the stairs, and the dog was resisting. When Sintes asked Meursault if he was not disgusted, by the way, Solomon was treating his dog; he said he was not. The character is strange since, in a way, he was communicating that, the dog has to be handled carelessly. The dog is an animal and must, therefore, earn some respect.
“But I wasn’t sure if I could smoke, under the circumstances-in Mother’s presence” p.7. Meursault was not sure whether he could smoke in the presence of his mother. The character is strange since his mother was a dead body, and therefore, I do not find anything that could hinder him from doing what will satisfy his quest, for example, smoking. The statement, therefore, means that he was not free to do certain things in the presence of his mother. I do not consider smoking a big deal since people do it openly.
"Shall I tell them to wait, for you to have a last glimpse of your mother? No, I said," p.9. The character is strange since because of the affection one may have on his parents, they may want to have a last glimpse to the body before being laid to the grave. However, when Meursault was asked if he could do the same, he refused.
“What was her age...? I did not know exactly how old she was” p.11. Meursault portrayed a strange character when he was asked the age of her mother that he said that he does not know. I consider it odd since the mother had died, and it was time the body was being transported home; he had enough time to research for such details. Unfortunately, he did not look for the details
The Stranger: Peculiar Nature of Meursault
English & Literature
Films are a manifestation of the social, economic and political situation in society. With the passage of time, change was inevitable, and the conservative Japanese society shifted. Yakuza films were not left behind. They too changed and film directors dumped the old conservative ways, and adopted scenes of moral decay in society in films as was the case during the time the movies were acted. Therefore, moral squalor in society has been portrayed in the Yakuza films that largely featured in the 2000s.The much love associated with the films died as social, economic, and political shifts were witnessed from 1990s to the subsequent years towards mid 2000s thereby rendering the films nonconsensual to the slow changing conservative to democratic society. Yakuza culture, as presented in the films, is not only symbolic, but also confer real benefits in the criminal underworld. Symptomatic approach, as applied in analyzing this paper involves providing an explanation of the Yakuza situation in society based on the character of the doer of actions in the film. This paper argues that the changing nature of the Japanese society in the 2000s led to dislike and subsequent death of the art of Yakuza films by portraying Yakuza and its members as blood-thirsty and sketchy group.
Yakuza group began in the Tokugawa Shogunate period and had two different groups. The first group was tekiya who moved from one village to other selling goods of low quality to earn a living. The second group was the bakuto who engaged in gambling as a primary source of income. Since then, the Yakuza group has been a dominant part of the Japanese culture. At the onset of the formation of the groups, society regarded them as social organizations meant to foster peaceful stay in society. When one community wrong another one, they would consent to the symbolic offering of the small finger as a means of settling dispute amicably. Where controversy existed that could not be agreed upon, each Yakuza group would bring their best fighter to compete in a fight to solve the issue. At some point the fighter would die. The death of the fighter would be attributed to the sacrifice of the Yakuza for the greater good of society (Schrader 3). People loved and identified with the Yakuza. The emergence of the film industry to further show the goodwill of the Yakuza, and received remarkable support from society. In most of the films, the Antagonist would die or be imprisoned for the sake of his community.
As time goes by, so does change crop in, and in the years after the Second World War, Yakuza had lost track of their initial ways of carrying out business and protecting society. Instead of being the custodian of peace, they were the instigators of moral decadence. Having made alliances with the ruling party and the government, Yakuza, conducted illegal business without much restriction. With the economic decline in the 1990s, the Yakuza thrived more in prostitution activities. They could easily acquire pornographic actors and actresses for filming. Besides, due to their financial endowment, they started strip clubs, hotels and brothels where prostitution would be carried out. The movies of the early 2000s, written from the backdrop of moral squalor in Japanese society at the time portrayed Yakuza and its members as a blood-thirsty and sketchy group through symbolism such as violence, drugs, sex as well as stereotypes such as tattoos, formal attires, and fancy cars. Besides, the gangs are rich organizations with their wealth rooted in criminal activities such as prostitution, women and drug trafficking, and money laundering.
The political situation in japan helped shape the social and economic activities as presentenced in Yakuza films (Treverton and Gregory 111). According to Treverton and Gregory, the police used Yakuza groups to maintain peace and order, and it is the symbiotic association with the police that helped it to survive (112). In films such as Dead or Alive 2, and outrage, we see gang leaders publicly and freely conducting illegal business in marked premises. Use of symbols such as Dragon tattoos on doors is evident in Tokyo and other cities. According to Treverton and Gregory, Yakuza offices are clearly marked with the symbol of the gang, hence making it easy to locate the gang offices (117). In Dead or alive 2, Mizuki Okamoto is hired to assassinate a Yakuza gang leader who resides in an office with red Dragon drawings on the door. The use of symbols both in the films and in reality show how much the government and the police force know about the presence of the gangs but do not take lawful actions.
Gambling is another feature that best identifies the Yakuza group. The gambling activity of the group traces back to more than a hundred years ago The bakuto group is one of the groups that constitute the Yakuza group and it is primarily associated with gambling. In the early 2000s, the main gambling activities of the Yakuza group were to run the gambling joints in the entertainment centers (Hendry). At such places, they could easily attract and retain their customers, which was their primary goal. Yakuza clans get income from gambling rooms (Schrader 6) In Japan, gambling is prohibited; therefore, the gambling joints were frequently raided by the police. But this did not stop the gambling culture of the Yakuza as they were professional gamblers who would not cheat. Therefore, honesty would retain their customers. Besides, alliance with the police meant little disturbance. Apart from carrying out betting activities in Sumo Wrestling, and horse races, the group also included pachinko parlors in their dealings which have been profitable since pachinko is legal in Japan. In the 2000s, the gambling halls had been turned into brothels and points for exchanging drugs (Treverton and Gregory 112). In the Yakuza films of 2000s, the same phenomena is evident.
Piracy is another feature that defines Yakuza group. Piracy by Yakuza involves production of pornography videos either by unauthorized copying of existing content or by acting new ones. Treverton and Gregory reports that during the 2000s peiod, an illegal pornographic film cost three times more than a pirated one (116). Treverton and Gregory further reports that Rakudaine Yamaguchi –gumi, a Yakuza group in the 2000s conducted underground pornography activities as a basic source of revenue to supplement other sources such as women trafficking (116). The situation in society is transformed and acted in Films of the 2000s such as Tokyo Decadence. In the film, Ai, a submissive prostitute is involved in pornography filming with Yakuza crew, as instructed by the gang leader. The northern side of Nihonbashi in Osaka is a thriving ground for electronic shops that discreetly sell pornographic films for Yakuza groups, while the southern part of the town is largely occupied by hotels and bars that are used for prostitution (Treverton and Gregory 117). The presentation of pornography for sale in the film is a true manifestation of the illegal pornography business and porn movie production activities in Japanese brothels and hotels in the 2000s.
Prostitution is another feature that is identified by the Yakuza group. The group has largely invested in the business due to the profitability of the industry (Hendry). As a result of Yakuza investment in prostitution, it has led them to take part in human trafficking and pornography. Regarding the aspect of human trafficking, the group lures the foreign young women from abroad to Japan and they are forced to work in the sex industry. Also, the Yakuza engage in pornography where they produce and sell pornographic material that even sometimes includes underage girls. In movies of 2000s, the yakuza crew are used to safely transport prostitutes from one territory to another.
Violence also known as sokaiya in the Japanese culture, it is the act of disrupting the shareholders meeting using different means such as aggression or any other forms of disruption. In other cases, the shareholder members are forced to pay the Yakuza groups to stop them from disrupting their meetings. To access the meeting, the Yakuza buy shares in the companies of the interest and they end up threatening to disrupt the meetings if they are not paid or even reveal the secrets of corporations. Due to the fear of unsightly revelations, most of the demands of the Yakuza are met by the corporations’ members (Varese 117). Extortion has proven to serve best in earning big and easy money by the Yakuza. This is because the corporations that are humiliated are unlikely to report the incidences to the authorities due to the fear of Yakuza revealing their secrets. In Dead or alive 2, Mizuka Okamoto and Shuichi Sawada are violent assassins who are hired by Yakuza group to kill a gang leader from China. Their violence and ruthlessness is portrayed when Sawada manages to assassinate the gang leader under Okamoto’s watch, who is also ready to make the kill. In the documentary marked death of the Yakuza, Akihicho Ekenuchi, a Yakuza leader confesses to have been involved in unnecessary violent collection of taxes.
Another culture that is associated with the Yakuza is drug dealing. The group mainly deals with amphetamines. After the Second World War, these stimulant drugs were legal and common as they were used by both the soldiers and civilians. Since then until the early 2000s, the Yakuza has dominated the drug industry in Japan as they have the manpower and resources that boost their ability to handle the illegal business. Most of the Yakuza involve in the drug dealings to earn them a living as it is a very lucrative industry but other members are only consum
Yakuza Culture in the Japanese Films in the 2000s
English & Literature
The American dream is an ideology that anyone can be successful in America as long as they work hard, become wealthy and gain status quo. F. Scott Fitzgerald, in The Great Gatsby, portrays the destruction of what many believe is the American dream through the loss of morality and humility in pursuit of wealth. The American dream, which stands until today, is based on high moral standards that attract love and happiness. Many people across the world view this "dream" as factual and believe that America maintains such standards. In contrast, Fitzgerald’s novel portrays a perspective that shows the suffering undergone by those who have pursued and achieved the American dream in unethical means. The focus of this paper is on the nature of the American dream as depicted by Fitzgerald. Therefore, the withering of the American dream is the main point of focus of this paper.
Fitzgerald presents Jay Gatsby as a fighter, one who is ready to do anything to achieve what he desires; the American dream. In the novel, Gatsby, born and raised in a low-income family, believes that Daisy’s love, wealth and status quo is all he needs to be happy in life. Gatsby engages in corrupt deals, gains opulence and changes his name. He does this with a view that the new name will match with the status quo that wealth has offered him. Gatsby pursues Daisy despite her being in another relationship. In the novel, Gatsby buys a luxurious mansion to lure Daisy into loving him. ‘Gatsby bought that house so that Daisy would be just across the bay (p. 151). Additionally, he throws parties every week with a hope that Daisy may attend and have an opportunity to talk to her. He even goes to greater lengths and uses Nick to get an audience with Daisy. Gatsby is therefore presented as a conniving optimist who believes that Daisy will fall for in love with him if she learns of his new status quo.
Gatsby’s American dream goes wrong when he leaves Daisy at the university to go and pursue wealth. He puts all his mind in search of wealth and gets drowned in the muse. He forgets that family and love is essential. Later on, Gatsby comes back with wealth only to find Daisy married. Gatsby is desperate for love. "Your wife doesn't love you," said Gatsby. ‘She's never loved you. She loves me’ (p.238). The changing nature of American society, as presented by Fitzgerald presents a situation where wealth is judged based on a historical basis. Daisy cannot fall in love with Gatsby because he was poor in the past, and not even the newly acquired status quo can change the situation. Therefore, the changing times cause Gatsby to die unloved.
Fitzgerald uses symbolism and illusion in many instances within the novel to show that those in pursuit of the American dream cannot be fully satisfied. According to him, the American dream entails searching for something far more significant than what we have and what we can achieve. In the novel, Gatsby is stretching his arms afore towards the glowing green light placed at the far end of Daisy’s clock but fails to reach out to it. ‘He stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and far as I was from him I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward—and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away, that might have been the end of a dock (P. 152). Fitzgerald alludes to this situation on how the wealth Gatsby has accumulated fails to pursue Daisy to love him. Consequently, ‘the valley of the ashes’ as presented in the novel shows that those who pursue the American dream of being wealthy suffer ugly consequences. In the novel, Gatsby’s burial is attended by few people despite being wealthy.
Conclusively, Fitzgerald presents a situation that was evident during the 1920s when most people believed that wealth is the ultimate goal of happiness. He uses various stylistic devices to convey his observation on the corruption of the American dream. In my opinion, I believe and support the views of Fitzgerald that eager for wealth and status quo have been instrumental in changing and deteriorating the true nature of the American dream.
The Great Gatsby: The Corrupted American Dream
English & Literature
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