The Importance of Color F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book, the great Gatsby, takes place in the fictional peninsulas of East Egg and West Egg just after World War I during the prohibition era. The book is about the dreams of one man who is stuck in the past, embodying the American dream and his eventual destruction because of the corruption of the American dream. From both the side of this story, there is an underlying theme of power gained from wealth and artificial social status. All throughout the book, the Great Gatsby, there are many types of color symbolism, mainly referring to the colors gold and white for money and emptiness respectively; the more prominent of these symbols are the character Daisy, the clothing and major items, and the “Valley of Ashes.” Fitzgerald puts a lot of emphasis on a major character, Daisy, in his novel, The Great Gatsby. It begins with her name, Daisy, and use of the colors of a daisy with its golden center surrounded by white petals.
Gatsby’s lifestyle that consisted of lavish parties and amount of unnecessary servants are no more, as his attention is now focussed on Daisy Buchanan. In the first few pages of the chapter, Fitzgerald uses the semantic fields of heat references to show the tension amongst the characters. Nick claims ‘the next day to b broiling’ as he says ‘it was the warmest of summers’. Another technique that Fitzgerald plays with is the use of the superlatives ‘perspired’ and ‘simmered’ which also stands for the tension brewing in each character, subsequently adding to the detrimental effects of Gatsby’s tragedy. With the use of Nick’s commentary on various snippets of speech telling how the butler ‘roared’ this also makes it clear to the reader the significance of the tragic events which will be the downfall of Gatsby’s character.
“The Great Gatsby” gives us a hint that he had done great deeds in his life or something had happened to him for him to earn this name. Another foreshadowing tool that we see is when Nick returns from East Egg after dinner at Daisy’s house and sees Gatsby because “he stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way” towards “a single green light”. This symbol of longing that Gatsby shows is ultimately telling us the reason for his forthcoming downfall. There is also a discussion during the small party in Tom’s apartment in New York about Gatsby. Catherine, Myrtle’s sister, says that “he’s a nephew or a cousin of Kaiser Wilhelm” and claims that that is how he got his fortune.
Contradiction is a sort of theme throughout The Great Gatsby, as all the way through the novel the glamorous, high class side of NYC in the 1920s is seemingly glorified by all those who are entwined in it, yet through the affair of Tom Buchanan, the death of Myrtle and Gatsby himself as well as his affair with Daisy, the reader is shown the corrupting ways of this immoral, careless and unsympathetic society which is masked by dazzling wealth and superficial romance. Another example of a huge contradiction shown in the novel is the fact that Gatsby’s wealthy party guests all believed that happiness rested in money, but it did not. In Gatsby’s case, his source of happiness was love, and while the wealthier minority took everything including love for granted, Gatsby didn’t. However, his faith in love proved to be his demise; the novel shows that though love is the source of life, in this instance it has killed a man in his quest to find it. Fitzgerald’s use of contradictions adds to the air of mystery by, again, forcing the reader to question the novel constantly; why?
While the lifestyle of Tom and Daisy is very extravagant and lavish their relationship is not. Daisy suspects Tom of being involved in an affair with another woman and as such the relationship between the two is drifting apart. One could draw the connection between their open feeling house and the openness that is becoming of their relationship as they lose all forms of intimacy. In looking at the Buchanan’s house it is obvious that their social position is very high and Tom and Daisy would only be scene socializing with only the most elite social lights. Finally the personality of the Buchanan family, especially that of Tom is very pompous and haughty “Now he was a sturdy straw-haired man of thirty with a rather hard mouth and a supercilious manor.
Scrooges obsession with money even loses Belle his beloved "another idol has displaced me” “a golden one” Scrooge has replaced all of his joyfulness with money, and the fear of being poor. This is what Dickens fears for mankind .People getting caught up in utilitarianism. There is a big difference in the middle class and the lower
Fitzgerald's social insight in The Great Gatsby focuses on a select group: priviliged young people between the ages of 20 and 30. In doing so, Fitzgerald provides a vision of the "youth and mystery that wealth imprisons and preserves" (157). Throughout the novel Nick finds himself surrounded by lavish mansions, fancy cars, and an endless supply of material possessions. A drawback to the seemingly limitless excess Nick sees in the Buchanans, for instance, is a throwaway mentality extending past material goods. Nick explains, "They were careless people, Tom and Daisy -- they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made" (188).
Gatsby’s good qualities, loyal and love, lead to his death. There was a lot of greed and empty pursuit of pleasure in the 1920’s. The people who attended Gatsby’s parties were greedy. The parties resulted in the corruption of the American Dream, as desire for money and pleasure surpassed more noble goals. The stock market rised.
We see examples of this pull of money in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s book The Great Gatsby, through Nick’s eyes. It is through the narrator's dealings with high society that readers are shown how modern values have transformed the American Dream's pure ideals into a scheme for materialistic power and further, how the world of high society lacks any sense of morals or consequence. Fitzgerald shows the influence of money in decision making and motivation for people in every character of the book; money pushes Gatsby to get what he has lost, it leads Daisy to marry a man who she does not love, and money influences the actions of Gatsby’s friends after he dies. Gatsby, the protagonist of the book is attracted to Daisy, her social standing, and wealth, but he realizes that he did not had the influential charm of money or power that could create a similar pull in Daisy’s heart for him. Gatsby puts away every other aspect Samra 2 of American Dream and focuses on earning enough money to get his Daisy to him.
Theme Keyword(s): JAZZ AGE SUMMARY: The Roaring Twenties was a time of opulent lifestyles following the return of soldiers from World War One. A time when the younger generation rejected the values of the older generation. The lifestyle of the East particularly New York City, a place of wealth, was alluring and often, wild and debaucherous (immorality). People with wealthy heritages (Old Money = East Egg) began to resent those with recently acquired wealth (New Money= West Egg), especially if that money was made in dubious ways. The Jazz Age bought with it an economic boom which saw the birth of materialism and consumerism.