The American Dream: J. P. Morgan Vs. Andrew Carnegie

368 Words2 Pages
In this passage Lewis Lapham attempts to explain how Americans are driven by the idea of wealth and the pleasure that can be purchased thusly. He perfectly defines the essence of the American dream and how it coincides with the notion of American morality. To be blunt, the essence of the human nature is defined and driven by greed. It is our single prepossessing feature; this avarice serves as our salvation and our ultimate damnation. J. P. Morgan and Andrew Carnegie demonstrate the human urges to want. In their story, J.P. Morgan controlled the Steel Industry while Andrew Carnegie maintained a monopoly on the oil industry. These two fabulously wealthy men were still not satiated, so they formed a merger to obtain riches to a ridiculous extreme. However thye were not beyond redemption, nor were they entirely selfish. During the…show more content…
His ultimate goal is to capture affection of Daisy’s heart. In his quest for her heart he loses everything he accumulated, including his life. Daisy represents everything money could buy, yet the green light is beyond his grasp. In fact the light was already behind him. Because of his unhappiness Gatsby was blinded by his burning desire to have Daisy, whom was not rightfully his, making him yearn for more. American society exemplifies and glorifies the necessity of money. Americans are a meretricious lot, incapable of looking into the soul of a person and choose to rely on the judgments of their first outward appearance. They say Americans aim too high but if there were any other way to aim, we do not know it. The character James Gatsby is the perfect representation of this. Even though Carnegie and Morgan broke the mold of the stereotypical American, there is reason that this stereotype continues to exist. To Americans, money will always be that orgasmic green light, which continues to shine beyond our reach; it will continue to escape and enslave
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