The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby Reflection Paper. Book Review Essay
The essay is a book reflection on the book Great Gatsby written by written by Scott Fitzgerald an American and published in April 1925. The story is during the happening of the First World War characterized by hard economic conditions. The novel works on various diverse levels, providing readers with memorable characters and events.
The story tells of an event involving major characters as Nick, Tom, Daisy, Gatsby, the Wilsons and Jordan. It involves individuals who are trying to rekindle their relationship. For instance, Gatsby tried to win back the love of Daisy although the later is married to Tom.
On the other hand, Tom has a mistress Myrtle who is married to George. The turning of events later led to the death of Myrtle who was hit by a car and the shooting of Gatsby by George Wilson after gathering information about the owner of the car that hit his wife. He also killed himself. Although Gatsby was reach and famous, his funeral arranged by Nick was attended by very few individuals (Fitzgerald, 43).
Throughout the novel the major character Nick who was the narrator managed to bring out the main themes of the novel as well as developing other characters. Additionally, the manner with which he transformed or changed fascinated me.
The fact that Nick transformed throughout the novel made me like this skilful piece of art that was logically and artistically developed. The flow of sequence of events will always keep one at the edge of the seat trying to unravel what is the next chapter.
Concerning Nick transformation he initially seen as a man who hold high level of morals such integrity, honesty, trustworthy to mention but a few. However, when he tried fitting to his new friends’ lifestyle, for instance Tom and Jordan he losses his moral. For instance he accepted Jordan dishonesty “it made no difference to me. Dishonesty in a woman is a thing you never blame deeply-I was casually sorry, and then I forgot” (Fitzgerald, 125). The deeper Nick is drawn closely relating to his friends the less honest he turns out to be. At the end he is rebuked by Jordan for being just as dishonest and careless as the rest of group.
Additionally he chums around with Tom and Mrytle to suit their lifestyle.
Its is worth noting that Nick perception towards people has changed because he encounter individual who engage in adultery, hypocrisy, lying although he tried to fit with them but later sought to distance himself, this is depicted by this statement, “He [Gatsby] was clutching at some last hope and I couldn’t bare to shake him free.” (Fitzgerald, 195). This is probably an indication of Nick being tired of and ready to give up on friends who are not morally upright in the society.
Thus Nick in my humble opinion is the character I liked the most in this novel. The character who was least favourite was Gatsby. His acts of hosting parties with the desire that his former love will attend so that he rekindles the relationship and the manner with which he treated others was not good.
I would highly recommend the novel to individuals in high school, collages as well as those who are over the age of 16. The reasons for this rest on the idea that the novel has a lot of moral teachings and the author managed to bring out his ideas using simple English that can be easily understood. For this artist work, I would rate it 9 out of 10.
Fitzgerald, Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribners, 1925. Print
Fitzgerald’s American Dream in The Great Gatsby & Winter Dreams Argumentative Essay
All people dream as this ability is human. Each nation dreams, but only one nation made up the dream that contains the way how to reach it. Of course, this is the American Dream. American Dream is the belief that if you work hard, you are creative and persistent; you will succeed and achieve prosperity.
To my mind, the reason why the American Dream is not dead is that it works. And there are a lot of examples of the American Dream realization in real life. Of course, it is also reflected in American literature, for example, F. Scott Fitzgerald paid a lot of attention to this in his Winter Dream and The Great Gatsby.
The American Dream in Fitzgerald’s Novels
At the very beginning of The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald (through the narrator) claims that American Dream invented by our great-grandfathers is still in our minds. The narrator, Nick, mentions his “great-uncle” who “started the wholesale hardware business,” which
Nick’s father proceeded to carry on (Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby 4).
Nick’s great-uncle worked very hard and, finally, made the American Dream come true. And even after his death, his descendants benefit from his deeds. The other story beginning also reveals the success story of the main hero, who followed the American Dream.
He started his business: he bought “a partnership in a laundry” and studied thoroughly every detail which improved services he provided. He worked hard; he even “made a specialty of learning how the English washed fine woolen golf-stockings without shrinking them” (Fitzgerald, Winter Dream 7). And in a few years he achieved prosperity, his persistent work led to the American Dream realization.
It is necessary to point out that there are different ways to achieve the American Dream realization. For example, Fitzgerald provides two separate stories: one story shows a transparent and quite exact way to succeed, and the other one shows an obscure way of gaining prosperity. However, the person made a lot of effort to have everything he (and many others) wanted.
To my mind, Winter Dream is a perfect example of the American Dream, since the main hero, Dexter, implemented each point of it, he was persistent and very hard-working, he was a very sensible and pleasant young man.
From his very childhood, everyone used to say that Dexter was “the best” in everything he did since he was “willing,” “intelligent,” “quiet,” “honest,” and “grateful” (Fitzgerald, Winter Dream2). Even being a caddy, he was very precise in his work; he didn’t skip from work and “never lost a ball” (Fitzgerald, Winter Dream 2).
The boy understood the importance of education and was a very assiduous student, and after graduation, he started his business at once. Dexter did everything thoroughly, and that is why in 4-5 years after buying a “partnership in a laundry,” he had a net of very profitable laundries.
All this makes Dexter an embodiment of the American Dream. Dexter was successful and respected. His clients insisted “that their Shetland hose and sweaters go to his laundry just as they had insisted on a caddy who could find golfballs” (Fitzgerald, Winter Dream 7).
Not only his clients respected him, everyone who knew his story recognized him for his persistent work. To my mind, this respect came from understanding that Dexter implemented the American Dream: he worked persistently, and he deserved to be prosperous. This example, people wanted and still want to follow because the American Dream is a perfect story of success, which can be real.
Gatsby can be suggested as another example of the American Dream, though in his case, his story is far from perfection. His way to prosperity is quite obscure. No one really knows the source of his income, no one knows what exactly he did to achieve such wealth, and no one knows whether he worked hard to win the prize.
I think that is the main reason why people thought Gatsby was connected with the criminal world. For example, one woman said that “he killed a man once” (Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby 29). Some other people thought he was “some big bootlegger” just like other “newly reach people” (Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby 69). And this is another side of the American Dream when some people also do their best to achieve success; they are very persistent, though they take some illegal actions.
This, of course, is not praised, this cannot be the genuine American Dream, that is why people don’t like Gatsby, don’t trust him; they only envy him. Such kind of deviated American Dream can do no good for anyone; that is the reason why, to my mind, Gatsby is murdered at the end of the book. Fitzgerald showed that such prosperity is a false one; only good deeds can bring good to one’s life. Though I would like to add that Gatsby was quite a good person, he was kind and sincere with Nick, and he was a good friend.
The only thing Gatsby wanted was that the woman he loved was with him. He earned all those money for her. That justifies Gatsby in a way, and Nick even understands that all those people who accused Gatsby of being a criminal but still visited his parties and enjoyed his generosity, were even worse than Gatsby, they were “a rotten crowd” (Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby 98).
Thus, such an obscure example of gaining prosperity is not often called the American Dream, since this example doesn’t reveal one of the constituents of it, which is hard work, and criminal efforts can’t substitute honest work. To my mind, The Great Gatsby is a sad story of how the American Dream, being inverted and misunderstood, led to the death of a person.
The two fiction writings by F. Scott Fitzgerald prove that the American dream is still in our minds, and it is inspiring. Reading these great stories makes the reader learn what the American Dream is to be, what one should do to achieve success, and what mistakes one should never stay safe.
Of course, Fitzgerald is not the only one who reveals this idea in his works; a lot of different writers, poets, musicians, politicians, and many others keep mentioning it. The American Dream is not dead since every day we witness new stories of hard work and success in every field of our life.
Moreover, my firm belief is that the American Dream can never fade away since it gives us hope in success and shows the way how to reach it. Young people see that it is possible to reach the top by persistence and hard work; thus, they go on trying and never quit their efforts in achieving success.
Fitzgerald, Francis Scott. The Great Gatsby. Hertfordshire: Wordsworth Editions, 2001.
Fitzgerald, Francis Scott. Winter Dreams. Whitefish, MY: Kessinger Publishing, 2004.
The Great Gatsby: Analysis and Feminist Critique
The Great Gatsby: Abstract
This Great Gatsby essay explores one of the greatest novels written in the 1920s. It was created in the days when the society was by far patriarchal, and the concept of the American dream was different. Essays on The Great Gatsby usually explore how much men had dominated society, which led to women discrimination and objectification; the novel will help us understand the concept of feminist critique.
The feminist critique is an aspect that seeks to explore the topic of men domination in the social, economic, and political sectors. It aims to expose how much women characters have been discriminated in the society through the study of literature. This sample essay on The Great Gatsby will apply the concept of feminist critique with reference to the F. Scott Fitzgerald’s work to expose some of the aspects of patriarchal society as revealed in the novel.
The Great Gatsby: Summary and Analysis
The Great Gatsby starts by bringing in a male character, Nick Carraway, as the narrator. First, the narrator is just from the First World War and seeks to settle and takes a job in New York. Searching for wealth and happiness, he rents a bungalow in West Egg next to a generous and mysterious bachelor Jay Gatsby, who owned a mansion.
Nick describes the mansion as “a colossal affair by any standard – it is an imitation of some Hotel de villa in Normandy, with a tower on one side, spanking new under a thin beard of raw ivy, and a marble swimming pool, and more than forty acres of lawn and garden” (Fitzgerald 1).
The introduction analysis brings out a theme of male occupying a more significant portion of wealth. These two men were relatively young and yet so rich to own such property at their age. The mentioned women, Daisy, Jordan, and Myrtle, are just an attachment to the men in the society since they all at some level depict an aspect of lack of independence since men dominate every aspect of life.
Socially, men seem to dominate in the relationships in The Great Gatsby. Tom’s financial power sets him way ahead of that he can afford to have an affair outside marriage. That’s what he does in an open way as he invites Nick, Daisy’s cousin, to meet his mistress Myrtle Wilson. Nick’s reflection on the relationship between Tom and Daisy, Tom, and Myrtle shows a break of social norms.
Tom’s relationship with the two women is abusive and of so much control. He abuses Myrtle publicly in the name of making her straight by even beating her. Tom comes out as a man who has so much power to bully everybody, including Myrtle’s husband Wilson, he also has so much control in Daisy, his wife.
Usually, one will expect that Nick being a cousin to Daisy, will resist seeing their close relatives get involved in extra-marital affairs. Nick being a man, supports other men, Tom and Gatsby, in their moves. After knowing that Gatsby had been in love with Daisy before she got married, he allows reconnection to happen in his own house although Gatsby’s credibility was still in question to him.
He admires Gatsby’s having “an extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness he had never found in any other person and which it was not likely he could ever find again” (Fitzgerald 1). This admiration overpowered his questions on Gatsby’s character and that of his company. This shows that men’s dominance was critical since women were to follow what the men wanted them to, not their choices.
The novel was written in a time when men could batter women if dissatisfied by their actions, absolutely ignoring women’s rights. In the meeting with Myrtle, when an argument ensued between Tom and the mistress, Tom broke her nose to shut her up. The whole thing looks normal and even when George complains to him, he is not moved by his cry.
Tom is the dominant character in the novel. He harasses people starting with his wife, his mistress, George and even Gatsby. Tom is seen doing the same thing Gatsby does, dating a married woman, but he has the guts to confront him on his affair with Daisy. When Myrtle died, he fires a battle between Gatsby and George by convincing him that Gatsby had an affair with Myrtle.
George kills Gatsby before killing himself as a sign of revenge. The revenge was purely egotistic to reclaim his position as Myrtle’s husband since his status as a man on top of the relationship had been invalid. This leaves a mark in moral decadence, which only happens in a patriarchal society that cannot be controlled by any other voice than the male voice.
The novel has so much influence geographically and culturally due to the approach used and the structure itself. Tom Buchanan’s treatment of his wife and mistress and Gatsby’s manipulation of Daisy, Tom’s wife, brings out the aspect of male domination.
The male has a dominant part in the exploitation of power in the relationships, and marital status is nothing of a worry when one wants to pursue their mistresses. Men in the text have idolized women, and they justify their reasons for the exploitation of women.
For example, Gatsby’s life is made true by the fact that he managed to have a relationship with a lady he had loved before. He does everything to get her, which include him “buying a house in West Egg just so that Daisy would be just across the bay” (Fitzgerald 1). This was a crucial sport in being strategic in his plans.
Tom, on the other hand, uses his physical and financial powers to prove that he is in control. He and Gatsby set social structures that attract women to them. However, Nick, the narrator, was not able to relate with the unpredictable and manipulative Jordan Baker. Jordan Baker’s character of believing that she could do as much as a man could do scared him away. She is unlike Daisy, who chose to stay with Tom, although she was in the relationship for financial gains.
Gatsby describes her as one with “voice is full of money” (Fitzgerald 1). For Jordan’s belief in herself, Nick later blames his failure to cope with her on her partying, smoking, and drinking character without really revealing that he had the same character as being pragmatic.
Women in the great gatsby had been accustomed to so much submission; an example is in Daisy’s character. She has a complacent kind of character that makes it difficult to make her own decisions.
She exhibits incapacity to have an independent sense of self-will that Gatsby takes advantage of to win her by flattering her with words like “You always have a green light that burns all night at the end of your dock” (Fitzgerald 1). The fact that she had a relationship before with Gatsby was enough to lead her in deciding to have an affair with him.
Myrtle also belongs to the same types of women as Daisy as she engages in a relationship with another woman’s husband just because they met and liked each other. This aspect manages to bring out a clear definition of gender roles and identity in the earlier days when the novel was written. Men ask, and women respond without looking at what could be affected in their decisions.
The Great Gatsby sample essay shows how the novel brings out an aspect of both genders reclaiming their positions in society in terms of gender relations. Though the male has dominated, and the female has proven to be dependent on men, they both need to redefine themselves as the victims of social norms.
The male gender has dominated the economic and social part of the society making sure that the role of women is reduced to being subjects to the male exercise of power. This has been shown clearly by women getting trapped in the misogyny and manipulation set by men hence making it hard for them to stand by their choices. Their gender nature dictates the character choice in the male-dominated world.
The male exercise their power over the significant female characters by ensuring that they remain the sole financial sources, and the women exercise their dependence by remaining in their marriages despite their involvement in affairs outside marriage. Though there are men like George, who have lost their position, they still exhibit their ego by defending their marriages.
Fitzgerald, Scott. The Great Gatsby. University of Adelaide, 2005. Web.
Fairy Tale Traits in The Great Gatsby Essay
Penned by a famous Minessota native and narrated by Nick Carraway, The Great Gatsby is a captivating must-read chef-d’oeuvre. Like Fitzgerald, Nick is a native of Minnesota and an advocate of Midwestern values. The novel’s setting is on the long island dominated by prosperous wealthy and poor communities of East Egg and West Egg. The year 1922 marked the dawn of a period of epochal social alterations and economic prosperity in America.
Cultural convections perceived as out of date die ushering in new ones. Women seem granted rights to participate in voting, something that causes them to see themselves as equal to men: they assimilate masculine ways and fashions into their lifestyles. Jingoism and racism rise abundantly as mechanisms to counter the benefits and opportunities acquired by non-white communities and foreigners.
Around the same time, the ardent push by religion fundamentalists to the government to prohibit the consumption of alcohol sees bootleg whiskey business greatly hampered with by people. Upon considering the use of symbolism, themes, and characters in the story, it seems evident that the author incorporated substantial elements of the traditional plot for fairy tales. Such a tale has heroes and villains.
The villains remain perceived successful at the onset of the tales but turn out as large losers at the end. Therefore one can see Daisy Buchanan as a Fairy Tale Princess. Basing on the several evident parameters, for instance, the character traits, the behavior of prince and princess, and gender distinctions amongst others, Fitzgerald’s masterwork stands out as a variation and sophisticated version of the fairy tale.
Character Traits/Prince and Princess Behavior
The Great Gatsby characters exhibit traditional fairy tale traits through vividly intertwined with variations and sophistication of purely fairy tale. Daisy Buchanan is a typical princess who never grows. She rejects Gatsby and marries Tom Buchanan (wealthy snobbish West Egg resident) later again to have an affair with Gatsby.
In thought, she is shallow and lacks maturity. She says: “I’ve gone everywhere and seen everything and done everything” (Fitzgerald 141), portraying that she is wholly bored with life. In spite of her unhappiness in marriage and the privileges she goes through in life, she is not the likes who give up simply so as not to turn out as being the loser.
She had better live with marriage challenges than live without money as Gatsby tells us, “her voice is full of money” (Fitzgerald 151). On the other hand, Tom Buchanan is an arrogant, fabulously wealthy and condescending character. His fellow students despised him at Yale. This is a typical response from the society towards people exhibiting wild characteristics in fairy tales. However, these characters are stereotypes of modern cultures that have an ardent love for wealth and could partake anything to attain it.
For instance, Nick says, “Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter- tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther…” (Fitzgerald 153). Gatsby climbs his ladder to be among the opulence club member through participation in illegal bootleg whiskey business and organized crimes.
Gender distinctions are evident comparable with traditional fairy tales, which more often than not tend to bring out the gender differences in terms of allocation of roles and responsibilities in the society. Gatsby and tom travel to the city to partake their respective work leaving women behind. Daisy exclaims: “I’m glad it’s a girl. And I hope she’ll be a fool- that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool” (Fitzgerald 160 ).
Daisy informs that the survival of women relied on their husband’s fate. Women disguise themselves as fools, just like her to benefit both socially and materially from men. The other side of the coin tends to show the plot of the writing to be somehow not purely that of traditional fairy tale since females in this society, seem to have some absolute rights. For instance, women can engage in arguments with their husbands on matters of infidelity.
Construct and Conformance to Traditional Fairy Plot
The plotting and writing employ smiles and metaphors to provide a vivid description of places and people. For example, wheat fields are compared to “the valley of ashes” (Chrome Para. 3). The social setting makes the novel more consistent with the traditional plot for fairy tales.
The novel is set among wealthy and educated persons who have an enormous deal for partying and shallow concern for the rest of the people who do not fall in their social milieu. Analogous to traditional fairy tales, in The Great Gatsby, no one seems to be individually worried about issues surrounding spiritual, political, and economic matters.
The primary concern is their overall perception socially. The social climate advocated for is the one, which demands conformance to some specified standards. This fact remains exemplified by Tom’s flaunting about his mistress, something that draws many issues to the society. Besides, in spite of suspicion of Jay Gatsby’s involvement in organized crimes, people still take part in his laxative parties.
Just as fairy tale ends with a promise of a happy life ever after, The Great Gatsby sums up by promising something like happy life after convection. Nick practically appears to invent idealistic Gatsby somewhere midway to cast him to the realization of the right indulgencies affiliated to heroism.
Nick laments that “…Gatsby was overwhelmingly aware of the youth and mystery that wealth imprisons and preserves, of the freshness of many clothes and Daisy, gleaming like silver, safe and proud above the hot struggles of the poor” (Fitzgerald 41).
This piece looks like an attempt to achieve fairy tale quests. Symbolism and figurative language are sufficiently used by the author, who gives the novel a more feel of a fairy tale. However, the figures deployed tend to reflect much on modern-day social challenges like corruption. In real life, this represents aristocrats, which took a long time to establish. Symbolically the author tags them “old money” (Fitzgerald 54) and remains generally characterized by corruption accompanied by jaded ways of life.
On the other hand, west Egg residents or “new money” (Fitzgerald 54) are perceived by East Egg counterparts as upstart outsiders. Nick and Gatsby live in this community. The green light is yet another symbol that depicts Gatsby’s dreams. As Gatsby comments, “you always have a green light that burns all night at the end of your dock” (Fitzgerald 79), The green light gives a permit to move on to pursue dreams.
The Great Gatsby is a tragic novel which perhaps reminiscent of tragedies such as the downfall of central characters in a tragic flaw typically called hamartia appearing in ancient Greek plays- Sophocles (497-405 B.C). The novel documents the rise and fall of two exclusive noble phenomena: American society and Gatsby. The tragedies involving flaws encountered extend from one ridge of idealistic naivety and on the other ridge enormous corrupt behavior. The tale, therefore, is a variation and sophisticated version of the fairy tale.
Chrome, David. The great Gatsby: Homework Online Study Guide, 2005.
Fitzgerald, Scott. The Great Gatsby. Washington: Scriber; Reissue, 1999.
The Great Gatsby Essay (Book Review)
The Great Gatsby is a classic work of F. Scott Fitzgerald, an American author of short stories and novels. The book was first published in 1925 during a period known as the Jazz Age. The novel was purely creative work of the author.
The story was set on North Shore in Long Island in New York City. F. Scott Fitzgerald was one of the greatest writers in America in the 20th century. He wrote the novel during the First World War when American society enjoyed success. The period was known as roaring 1920s when the economy soared. During this period, the manufacturing and sale of alcohol were banned. This prohibition made millionaires become bootleggers.
The Great Gatsby is a love story that embraces American ideals of 1920s as viewed through the characters’ actions throughout the novel. The story is about Jay Gatsby, a wealthy man, and his love for Daisy Buchanan. The book addresses the lavish life that most people lived in America during the 20s, a period referred to as roaring 20s.
The 1920s of America was a rebellious decade, a period when the younger generation mainly focused on having fun and fritting their time with friends instead of family. During this period, some amendments were made in the American Constitution, which included enforcement of prohibition.
Nobody was allowed to produce, sell, or even consume alcohol in America. With the existence of probation law, crime also increased in America. All these characteristics of America during 1920 are evident and inherent in the main character, Jay Gatsby, in the novel The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald portrayed Gatsby as an extravagant young man who loved parting and bootlegging.
This is evident in the book: “Tom accused Gatsby of bootlegging and other illegal activities (Bruccoli 100).” Gatsby discovered that Nick, who is the narrator of the story, is related to Daisy, the woman he fell in love with. The love that Gatsby had for her had been buried, but when he saw Daisy at Nick’s place, that love rose again, which caused mayhem among Tom, Nick, Daisy, and him. The plot of the book presents an intertwined love story, and the characters’ actions bring out the American ideals of the 1920s.
Gatsby also presents the economic status of Americans during the 1920s. After the end of World War I, there was financial peace in America, and many people had the potential to acquire wealth. Many people began to spend money on cars, tourism, and houses.
Gatsby is an excellent example in the novel; he did everything in his power to acquire wealth, and after that, he began to misuse it. In the beginning, Gatsby was an ordinary man without much wealth; this was before he met his love Daisy (Bruccoli, 89). This story also depicts America before the 1920s when its economy was not stable yet.
After the war, many soldiers decided to come back home to their families. This is one of the themes in the novel The Great Gatsby. Gatsby strived to go home at the end of the war, but he ended up in Oxford. However, when he finally managed to get back, Gatsby began to look for the love of his life, Daisy. Based on American ideals, one can say that those soldiers that went to fight in World War I in Europe had a strong love for their country. They went back home to look for their loved ones.
The financial stability in America during the 1920s is evident through the kind of life that the characters in The Great Gatsby had. Gatsby and his friends used to spend freely more on entertainment and leisure. They used to go out to lavish parties, which were attended by everyone. The preface of alcohol beverages accelerated this in the Prohibition period (Bruccoli, 140).
In conclusion, The Great Gatsby is a love story that embraces American ideals of the 1920s as viewed through the characters’ actions throughout the novel. The book addresses the lavish life that most people were living in America during the 20s, a period referred to as roaring 20s.
Bruccoli, Joseph. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby: A Literary Reference. New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2000.
The Idea of Love in The Great Gatsby and the Parallels or Contrasts that Can Be Drawn with the Presentation of Love in The Catcher in the Rye Analytical Essay
Love is the feeling which may be expressed in many different ways. The understanding of love also differs and various people have different considerations about this feeling.
The problems of love have been discussed by many authors and each of them tried to show something personal in that love, something unusual and different from what has already been written. Reading F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Jerome Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, it is possible to state that the notion of love is presented there similarly even though the texts are absolutely different and the problems discussed there are different as well.
Therefore, the main idea of this paper is to dwell upon the problem of love in each of these novels and try to consider the parallels and contrasts which may be seen. Both novels, Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Jerome Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, express romantic love which exists in the dreams of the men and who never tell about their thoughts. In reality, their love is expressed roughly in case with Gatsby and is not expressed at all if to talk about Holden.
While reading Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby for the first time, one may notice a desperate but thwarted love of two people who seem to have a great desire to be together, but due to particular circumstances these people could not do it. Dwelling upon thwarted love, the discussion is held about Gatsby and Daisy. Considering the love of these people, it is possible to see the devotion and the desire to be together.
It is obvious that Gatsby is absorbed with Daisy, “There must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled of his dreams – not through hew own fault, but because of the colossal vitality of illusion” (Fitzgerald 78). Writing this, the author adds, “He [Gatsby] had thrown himself into it with creative passion, adding to it all the time, decking it out with every bright feather that drifted this way” (Fitzgerald 78).
And when do people dream most of all? It happens during the time when they are in love and when they are ready to dream about the object of worship. Even though Gatsby’s dreams are so great and passionate, the main character is faced with the problem that he is unable to tell about his feelings.
Each time he wants to present something, each time he wants to tell Daisy how great and devoted his love is, he is stubborn and cannot say anything romantic and passionate, like he can in his dreams. A great critic of American literature, Harold Bloom writes about this aspect of Gatsby’s character as follows, “Gatsby cannot tell his dreams; every attempt he makes to describe his love for Daisy collapses into banality” (Bloom 7).
However, it seems that the actions better disclose human feelings and the desire to accept the guilt of murder of Myrtle instead of Daisy should be considered as the expression of love and devotion. But the funerals of Gatsby and the presence there just Nick with Gatsby’s father and several servants shows the level of Daisy’s love.
The problem of love and relations in Jerome Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye is absolutely different but the features of that love may be considered as the same.
The main character in this novel is fall in love and this state of mind and soil continued perpetually. Discussing the novel, Mendelsohn says the following which strictly underlines the romantic mood of the Holden’s love, “You cannot really fail in love because real love with a real person might be less than perfect (this is the adolescents’ dilemma), but you cannot really do anything but look for love” (Mendelsohn 124).
Reading the novel, it seems that the protagonist is afraid of growing up, that he is afraid of moving ahead as the fear of something unknown and strange frightens him. What is the result of such fear? Holden chooses the relationships, the live which is unavailable.
His relation to Jane is romantic and therefore it seems unreal as the world is cruel and Romanism may be only in dreams. Supporting the idea of unreachable love, Salinger makes the hero to become attracted with the mummies in the museum he visited “I loved that damned museum” (Salinger 79) which are unreachable as well. Therefore it may be stated that the novel points at the relationships which cannot exist.
Comparing and contrasting the novels The Great Gatsby by Jerome Salinger and The Catcher in the Rye by Scott Fitzgerald, it is possible to draw the parallel in expressing to love and in attitude to women. The male main characters of both novels are romantics as they are dreaming too much about their lovers but in reality none of them are able to express their feelings.
Even though the situations are absolutely different and Gatsby is dating with his lover and Holden just talks to Jane over the telephone. But both men are able to express their feelings only in their dreams. Thinking about their lovers, both Gatsby and Holden are able to express their feelings, they can tell them how they love and how they want to be with their women. However, the reality is absolutely different and both men do not have the words to express what they feel.
Considering the situation deeper and thinking about the consequences of love affairs in the novels, the men who had never dared to meet with his love, Holden who just talked over the telephone with Jane remained with the same feelings while Gatsby was killed and his love was thwarted.
Therefore, it may be concluded that Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby and Jerome Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye are the novels which focus on absolutely different problems, but the idea of expressing love is the same. The authors consider various social issues and love is just the part of the discussion, however, these authors managed to show that in many cases love people feel remains in their minds.
The feeling of love in these novels is romantic as the men have great dreams, they can love, but they never express what they feel and this idea makes the stories similar even though the situations and circumstances have nothing in common. Thus, the presentation of love is different as the circumstances do not coincide, while the idea of romantic love is the same.
Bloom, Harold. The Great Gatsby. New York: Infobase Publishing, 2010. Print.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: NuVision Publications, LLC, 2008. Print.
Mendelsohn, Jane. “Holden Caulfield: A love story.” J.D. Salinger’s The catcher in the rye. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Infobase Publishing, 2009. 123-130. Print.
Salinger, Jerome D. The Catcher in the Rye. New York: Penguin Books, Limited, 2010. Print.
Jay Gatsby and Valjean in ‘Les Miserables’: Comparative Essay
The ‘Great Gatsby’ is a novel revolving around the story of a young man, Nick Carraway, a graduate from Yale University. He does bond business and lives in the same neighborhood as Gatsby, a rich man whose life is a mystery. Gatsby, despite his earlier struggles with life, is now living a comfortable life in a large mansion (Fitzgerald and Bruccoli 1996).
Les Miserables, on the other hand, revolves around the story of Valjean, an ex-convict jailed for sixteen years after “he was caught stealing bread for his siblings who were dying of hunger” (Hugo, 2007). After another attempted arrest, he escapes and manages to start a factory under the name Monsieur Madeleine. The lives of Gatsby and Valjean have many contrasts and similarities in the way they live and the way they eventually die.
Gatsby & Valjean: Similarities & Differences
One of the similarities is the fact that they both live mysterious lives at some point. Gatsby in ‘Great Gatsby’ is a rich man with many business associates, but most people are not aware of his true identity. It is revealed that his idea of living in that particular area was so that he could be reunited with Daisy, who is married by now. The reason why he lives anonymously is so that he can hide his unfortunate past, which is why he separated from Daisy earlier in life (Fitzgerald and Bruccoli 1996).
Valjean of ‘Les Miserables,’ on the other hand, is an ex-convict trying to live beyond his dark past. Still, the past is not about to let go of him. He becomes a hero in a number of occasions but his past status somehow catches up every time he is almost succeeding in erasing it (Hugo, 2007). On many occasions, he changes his identity to protect himself from the authorities. He even goes as far as changing his name, but his true identity is still revealed.
The other similarity is that in the end, both parties die though under different circumstances. Gatsby is mistakenly shot dead by a man named Wilson after an accident that was caused by his car killed Wilson’s wife. On the other hand, Valjean dies a natural death after all the struggles in life. Besides him on his death bed are the two most influential people in his life; his adopted daughter and his son in law. From this similarity, we get the first contrast between these two characters.
Gatsby, despite his seemingly good life with parties and a lot of wealth, dies miserably after being suspected of having killed Myrtle by hitting her with his car. Valjean, on the other hand, despite his struggles, finally finds happiness in death, where he experiences the real value of family (Hugo, 2007). This implies that the end always justifies the means since it is what matters the most.
Another contrasting element between these two people is in the way they live their lives. Valjean’s life contains a series of misfortunes in the sense that he has to hide his true identity.
Each time his identity is revealed, he is in trouble with the law. He, however, has friends who are always coming to his rescue, one of them being Javert. Despite the misfortunes befalling him all through the novel, he manages to create relations that work for his good eventually. Gatsby, on the other hand, has a comfortable life since he has all the money in the world.
He has many friends and business associates, but these people are nowhere to be seen during his burial (Fitzgerald and Bruccoli 1996). This is an indication that he never had friends who were willing to stand with him in trouble. Most of the people in his life were there just for convenience and for the fact that he had a high position in society.
From the comparison of these two characters, we can conclude that it is never possible to predict the future since the present is usually deceptive in most cases (Crawford 1993). Gatsby seemed to be doing well from the beginning but ends up dying most unexpectedly.
His close associates also forsake him at this point. He is buried by a few people, unlike the many people who attended his parties. Valjean, on the other hand, seemed to be losing from the very beginning, since he is always running away from authorities. He, however, has the heart to assist people in the best way he can and ends up creating a family for himself, which stands with him even to the point of death.
Crawford, Bartholow V. American Literature. New York: Barnes & Noble, 1993. Print.
Fitzgerald, F S and Matthew JBruccoli. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner, 1996. Print.
Hugo, Victor. Les Miserable. Education Books, 2007. Print.
Jay Gatsby & Eponine from Les Miserables: Compare & Contrast Essay
Every human being is born with unique character traits. Even identical twins cannot have similar characters. Despite the uniqueness, some people may exhibit related characteristics to some extent. This paper compares the characters of Gatsby and Eponine. Gatsby is the main character in the book “The Great Gatsby,” while Eponine is one of the characters in the book “Les Miserables.”
Gatsby and Eponine
Gatsby is a noted habitual liar. Even his closest associate, Nick, and his girlfriend, Daisy, were equally victims of his lies. One of his apparent lies was that “he studied at Oxford University” (Fitzgerald, 156). The truth is that Gatsby worked as “an army man, sailor and bond seller” after he dropped out of St. Olfa’s college, where he had learned for only two weeks (Fitzgerald, 153).
Eponine’s character was filled with malice and perception. At the age of eighteen, she would fight much like men older than herself. She chose not to disclose anything about her past. Gatsby, at the same time, kept lying to his friends about his past (Roche, 161).
Gatsby struggled from a poor background and eventually became a wealthy man. The much wealth he amassed through illegal means made him proud and flashy. Jay liked showing off with his money. The author narrates how he kept on organizing brilliant parties for strangers. He lived in the class of the rich; his mansion was built with expensive construction materials with a luxurious “tower on one side” (Fitzgerald, 152).
The nicely finished compound had a swimming pool lined with marble and enclosed in a large parcel of land on which he tended a lawn and flower gardens. Eponine was also proud, just like Gatsby. She was very proud that she knew how to write and read. “I am going to write something to show you,” this was her statement to express her feelings about her literacy (Hugo, 112). Her literacy placed her in a different social status with the rest of the women.
Gatsby was quite a gentleman. He extended his generosity to everyone he came across. When Daisy, his girlfriend, was accused of killing Myrtle, Gatsby stood by her side and defended her throughout the case (Fitzgerald, 151). He was kind to everyone and was ready to use his money to please people.
In one of the parties he organized, he gave a new gown to one of the guests whose dress was accidentally torn while at the party (Bohlin, 162). Eponine was emotional and fearful. All of her songs are emotional (Roche, 162). She cried so often as a way of expressing her emotions.
Because of his cheating nature, Gatsby was a susceptible character. He embraced lies as a strategy to protect himself and perpetuate his “great name” (Bohlin, 220). This character made him loose all his close friends. He also used the lies to convince her girlfriends in romance. Eponine acts more like a boy than a lady. She is associated more with barricade boys and fought just like men. She bears the brand of “on my own” attitude, which is more of a man’s character than a woman’s one (Hugo, 109).
This essay made a comparison of the characters of Gatsby and Eponine as detailed in the books “The Great Gatsby” and “Les Miserables.” The two personalities were effectively used by the writers to bring out the themes of romance, social class, and struggles of life.
Bohlin, Karen. Teaching Character Education through Literature: Awakening the Moral imaginations in Secondary Classrooms. New York: Routledge Falmer. 2005. Print
Fitzgerald, Scott and Prigozy, Ruth. The Great Gatsby. New York: Oxford University Press Inc. 1998. Print.
Hugo, Victor. Les Miserables. Fairfield: 1st world Library. 2007. Print
Roche Isabel. Character and meaning in the novels of Victor Hugo. New York: Purdue University.2007.Print.
Jay Gatsby & Gean Valjean: Characters Comparison Essay
The role played by a character in any play defines his or her traits. These roles depend on the themes that the writer wants to discuss throughout the play. The writer could talk about love and compassion, greed and injustice. The theme of the play brings out the main traits of character revealed within the play.
A positive theme shows positive traits whereas a negative theme highlights negative ones. Different styles become necessary to help represent better the traits designed for the plays. This essay compares and contrasts the characters of Gatsby and Jean Valjean in the Les Miserable novels and films.
Gatsby was a young man whose life got transformed from poverty to riches. He grew up under sheer impoverished circumstances as a young boy but became extremely wealthy. He should be about thirty years old and full of life.
Raised from a struggling family, Gatsby desired riches and hated the miserable life his family lived. He became obsessed with seeking shortcuts or a quick way to gain some fortune and wealth. He was eager to get power that came with being wealthy. He hated processes and procedures. He could not keep up at school because he did not see how the school curriculum could get him out of poverty.
He dropped out of school barely two weeks after admission because of dissatisfaction with the duties assigned to him at school – janitorial duties. He could not bear the shame of the assigned duties. This was also his only way of paying his school fees. Stopping to do the chores meant that he would have to leave school. That is what he did by expelling himself (Fitzgerald, 2008).
Left with no other choice, Gatsby resorted to criminal living. He formed a gang engaging in several organized criminal activities including the sale of illegal brews (alcohol) and stolen securities. The decision by Gatsby to live such a life came as a need to be loved by a lady Daisy Buchanan.
The obsession for riches and wealth got fueled by the desire to have this woman as his wife. He wanted to make a great impression on this lady with his wealth and would not give up until he acquired everything he wanted. The lady Daisy was from a rich family with an elegant background. Gatsby lied about his own background in order to prove that he is worth this lady.
The writer of the novel, The Great Gatsby, deliberately delays the information about Gatsby’s obsession with lady Daisy until the end of the novel. He presents him rather as a flamboyant man who loved to throw opulent parties at his luxurious mansion. He paints him living a luxurious life surrounded by powerful men and gorgeous women (Bloom, 2010).
Jean Valjean is a central character in Les Miserables who became the main figure of love and compassion as highlighted in the Gugo’s trials. He was a criminal whose life got transformed by the deplorable conditions and experiences acquired at the prison. He went into the prison naïve and emerged as a hardened criminal with immense hatred for the church and society. He did not care about respect and greeted even the bishop with much contempt and hatred.
His meeting with Myriel Digne changed his life. He was forced to make a promise to become honest in all his undertakings. The once hardened and desperate criminal was influenced by love and yielded to its redemptive power and compassion. His diligence helped him to become a symbol of change within his hometown. Jean Valjean ended up as a philanthropic wealthy man (Hugo, 2006).
The stories of the dominant Gatsby and Jean Valjean show some similarities concerning their characters. Both of them have lived criminal lives even though fueled by different passions. They are both conquered by love. Gatsby and Valjean end up wealthy and powerful.
On the contrary, the two characters differ in their personality and strength. Gatsby strikes the readers as a naïve and lovesick individual though his character is negative. His desperation is clear.
He is a cheat who tells lies about his background. He is selfish. He only thinks of himself and what he wants as opposed to what can benefit the others. When conquered by love, Gatsby resorts to criminal activities to sustain it. On the other hand, we see Valjean who is physically strong and hardworking. He is an honest man who keeps his word (promises). His life is transformed by love and compassion.
He becomes visionary and philanthropic. Gatsby spends his money and wealth only on himself. He is evil and lacks a vision. Valjean is a symbol of hope. The factual changes that occur in the life of Valjean prove that anyone can experience a better life after a negative experience. Gatsby is a symbol of evil and discontentment. He is constantly in pursuit of what he lacks for. He is not willing to discover and do what is right while Valjean seeks to do what is right.
Gatsby and Valjean have similarities and differences. Valjean’s life changes for the better in the face of love unlike that of Gatsby. Their stories highlight the fact that these individuals are unique and different.
Bloom, Harold. The Great Gatsby. New York: Infobase Publishing, 2010. Web.
Fitzgerald, Scott. F. The Great Gatsby. USA: NuVision Publications, 2008. Print.
Hugo, Victor. Les Miserables. Objective Systems Pty Ltd, 2006. Web.
Francis Scott Fitzgerald & His American Dream Research Paper
Francis Scott Fitzgerald is a renowned American writer of the Jazz Age. He wrote about the disconcerting time in which he lived, where people were either rich or dreamt of wealth. Just like the majority of Americans, Fitzgerald could not resist the urge of wealth accumulation; unfortunately, this quest brought misery and devastation.
Fitzgerald’s life is an example of both sides of the American Dream: the joys of young love, wealth and success, and the tragedies associated with success and failure. His prodigious literary voice and style provide remarkable insight into the lifestyles of the rich and famous, as well as himself.
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was born in “St. Paul, Minnesota, the U.S. on 24 September 1896 (Edward 5). His father, Edward, was a nobleman from Maryland. Francis’ mother, Mary McQuillan, came from a wealthy background. Fitzgerald first attended St. Paul Academy, in 1908-1910, before joining the Newman School, a Catholic preparatory school in New Jersey, in 1911-1913.
His dreams of fame came close to reality later in 1917 at Princeton University, where he became a member of the prominent Princeton Triangle Drama Club. Fitzgerald made a significant contribution to the club, by writing scripts and lyrics for the club’s music, and contributed to The Princeton Tiger Humor Magazine and the Nassau Literary Magazine(Broom 65).
Fitzgerald struggled with his academics and finally dropped out of the college of Princeton and joined the army in November 1917, where he was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the junior team. Fitzgerald “fell in love with Zelda Sayre, the youngest daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court Judge while in Camp Sheridan, near Montgomery, where he had been assigned, in June 1918” (Curnutt 96).
He had grand hopes of marrying Zelda Sayre, who was eighteen years old then, in a few years (Bryer and Barks 36). After discharge from the army, in 1919, he involved himself in advertisement work, in New York, to in a bid to get money for marriage.
In July 1919, Fitzgerald quit from advertisement work and engaged in writing the novel “This Side of Paradise,” which made Zelda famous almost overnight on 26 March 1920 as one of the characters in his publication (Donaldson 56). They had a reunion and had a marriage a week later in New York, where they got on as young celebrities with expensive living.
His wife Zelda became pregnant during his summertime in Westport, where he was writing his second novel, and they had the first trip to Europe in 1921 before settling in St. Paul for the birth of their only child, Frances Scott, in October 1921 (Prigozy 96).
The literary works of Fitzgerald include the novel “This Side of Paradise” that he begun in Princeton. He wrote the book after breaking with fiancée Zelda Sayre and returning to St. Paul, Minnesota. The inspiration for writing this novel was to highlight both sides of youth in the U.S., morality, and immorality.
The novel was published in 1920, which made him famous. Within no time, Fitzgerald could make publication in prominent literary magazines like Scribner and other high paying popular publications, which included The Saturday Evening Post.
“The Beautiful and Damned” was his second novel, which he wrote in New York City, where he had rented an apartment after riotous summer in Westport, Connecticut. The book gives a picture of the immoderation of the Eastern Elite, during the Jazz age, through the characters Anthony and Gloria Patch, who end up to carefree life, as they wait for the young man to inherit wealth. The novel, a collection of short stories, “Tales of Jazz Age” in 1922, sold remarkably well, and Fitzgerald rented a house on Long Island.
Fitzgerald went to Europe for over two years, where he made publication “The Great Gatsby” in 1925 and began companionship with Ernest Hemingway of Scott. His first movie assignment was in 1927 in Hollywood and afterward went abroad several times. “Tender Is the Night” was his other novel based on his wife, Zelda, who had a main nervous breakdown in 1930 and her treatment in a Swiss Clinic. It describes his futile fight to save their marriage.
The novel describes his failure to marriage through the description of a psychiatrist, who gets used up after marrying one of his patients and exerting his vitality on her. “Tender is the Night” expresses Fitzgerald’s downright hopelessness and struggle caused by depression and Zelda’s sickness.
His fellow authors Ring Lardner and Ernest Hemingway, were critics of his first novel, “This Side of Paradise,” who appreciated his work (Eble 84). The book brings out the theme of romantic egoism, which he uses to enlighten his fellow America’s youths. The understanding of this novel, though outdated in the current generation, is that money should not be the only factor to determine love.
In the novel “Tender is the Night,” Fitzgerald describes the society in Riviera where he and his family had moved to live after his misfortune of late inheritance. They had joined a group of wealthy American expatriates whose life was profoundly influenced by Gerald and Sarah Murphy.
This gives a description of his struggles due to depression and economic failure in a bid to save his marriage. Following the challenges in life, Fitzgerald became an alcoholic (Canterbury and Birch 17). In real life, people have cases or even indulge themselves in irresponsible behavior because of marital problems and financial failure in a bid to avoid stress and depression.
“The Beautiful and Damned” novel was criticized by his friend Edmund Wilson and editor Marx Perkins who made the editorial suggestion (West 29). The book brings out social concerns of the quest for the status quo, through the life of Anthony and his wife Gloria, whose main work was to go down into laziness and alcoholism, while Antony awaits inheritance. Fitzgerald’s sluggish background affected his spending, which led him to deteriorate to a middle class, as he expected inheritance. They moved to Riviera to escape the misfortune.
Later in Life
Fitzgerald was despaired, by failure to save his marriage, and became an addict to alcohol. Nonetheless, he managed to secure a job as a scriptwriter in Hollywood in 1937. It was during this time Fitzgerald fell in love with Sheila Graham, whom they lived peacefully despite his moments of bitterness and violence due to alcoholism. He occasionally traveled to the east to visit Zelda or his daughter Frances. He finally wrote, “The Last Tycoon” in October 1939 based on renowned Hollywood producer, Irving Thalberg.
Analysis of the Themes
The Great Gatsby brings the theme of social standing through Gatsby, who spends his whole life to attain financial and social status in life. The desire to win Daisy back and achieve a social status motivated him to move to West Egg and make money by any necessary means. This shows his determination in life to reach a specific position in life through hard work.
Contrastingly, Daisy and Tom bring the theme of misuse of their position to despise others and lead an extravagant life, through Nick Caraways’ story. Jay Gatsby is a farmer’s son who turns a fraudster, due to his romantic illusion about the power of money to win wealthy Daisy. This story reveals a change in culture and lifestyles amongst the Americans. This helps to bring out heartlessness and immorality of the prosperous American society of the 1920s.
Economically there was an increase in the stock market, and the rich spent a lot of money on parties. This wave of prosperity is symbolized, in World War 1, whose fatal mission, and violent death, explains the collapse of the era and beginning of disillusionment, with the American dream of prosperity. The difference between “Gatsby’s dream, vision, and reality are prominent themes of the quest for social classes” (Prigozy 63).
In this novel, Fitzgerald uses figurative language to bring out his theme. Excessive images bring out idealism and illusion. The green light, which shines off daisy clock, shows the birth of a dream that, in the future, may not be a reality. Bright sunlight represents wealth and good scenes, as well as corruption and moral decay.
The author also uses personification when he says, “the sun smiled” to the children to depict the perspective of children towards the American Dream. The irony is noticeable in the party’s scene, and in Jordan’s observation in her assessment of Gatsby’s party, that to her seems small contrasting to the big parties she likes. The drunk scene in which Daisy destroys a letter from Gatsby and marries Tom the next day is central to irony (F. Scott 58).The theme of this story is the American dream that brings out moral corruption, deception, and delusion.
Fitzgerald’s Lifestyle: My Impression
Fitzgerald’s lifestyle makes an impression of my life’s quest for prosperity. His life is portrayed with struggles from the death of his noble father to his death. In spite of him be a robust literary legend, he had a battle in his academics that led him to join the army where he met the love of his love, Zelda. Later in life, he struggled to maintain his marriage after his wife succumbed to sickness. Fitzgerald became an alcoholic to overcome the stress and depression that made him have struggles in his work life.
Despite his struggles in life, Fitzgerald had exceptional talent in literature and became a prominent literary figure in the university. His notable works include five novels, and numerous publications are still inspiring to date. In his social life, he was unpopular to the other students due to his immense enthusiasm in life.
He became a prominent member of the Triangle club in pursuit of his ambitions and had a lifelong relationship with Edmund Wilson and John Peale. Fitzgerald was in love with Zelda Sayre that made him work hard to maintain the relationship due to his dismal financial income. His wife, Zelda, is used, in his novels, to bring out themes of the quest for the status quo. “The Lost Paradise” is a story after their breakup before their marriage because of his low income.
In the second novel, “The Beautiful and Damned,” her wife is portrayed as less understanding as to the two collapses into middle age life as they awaited him to inherit wealth and become rich.
The third novel, “Tender is the Night,” describes his struggle to maintain his marriage due to his failure over Zelda. “The Great Gatsby” is a novel, which describes how Fitzgerald spends the rest of his life struggling to work to maintain his marriage. His last book, The Last Tycoon, was incomplete by the time of his death, and his wife had returned to her matrimonial home.
Conclusively, Fitzgerald is a great writer with his novels and short stories having a substantial impact on addressing socioeconomic issues in the current life. His stories address the issues of social classes in society and the way the rich take advantage of the poor. He brings out the theme of the status quo- who should provide in a family.
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Bryer, Jackson, and Cathy Barks. Dear Scott, Dearest Zelda: The Love Letters of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2002. Print.
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