Materialism in “The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald Free Essay Example

April 13, 2022 by Essay Writer

The Great Gatsby is one of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s most recognizable novels. It was published in 1922 and still holds a special spot in a variety of people around the world’s heart. The classical novel touches on a wide range of subjects, including idealism which is a philosophical theory dated back to 480 BC fathered by Plato. The theory states that the regulation that thoughts or musings make up essential reality. It is any way of thinking which contends that the main thing understandable is awareness.

Materialism is another philosophical theory stating an inclination to consider material belongings and physical solace as more significant than otherworldly qualities. Other subjects that The Great Gatsby touches on are wealth, social classes, the uprising of the economy and the upper class more importantly. The very well-known novel touches on vast subjects upon that time, it was the first of many novels to come written about this particular era and setting, the summer of 1922 in Long Island, New

York. In this time money was a great thing like as it is today but money cannot buy happiness, it never has and never will. Throughout my reading of The Great Gatsby I could not help but notice how Gatsby, the richest man in his time was wealthy in regards to money but poor in people.

Jay Gatsby was one of the wealthiest men in his time but what went wrong? His childhood perhaps or is it that he spent too much time gaining and earning his well-deserved wealth that he forgot about the social aspects in life.

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Gatsby could buy anything he wanted, anything in the world from private jets to an entire country but he never realized that the only thing his money could not buy was happiness until it was too late. He was raised in an environment quite different than that he later on resided in, he was born to a poor family in North Dakota. He was a young ambiguous boy looking to be very successful later on in life, and just like that, his dreams became a reality with luck and fate. Towards the end of his story he and the readers finally realized that love cannot buy one’s happiness, he and Daisy were together at the beginning of the novel but again he had no money in this time and Daisy could not marry him and instead fell in love with Tom once Gatsby had gone off to war. For many years to come after he had returned from the war he spent most of his time earning and gaining wealth and an enormous reputation that he believed would bring Daisy back to him once more. Gatsby continuously tried to rekindle their old romance but to no surprise, she decided to stick with Tom once again because of the lifestyle that he can provide her with. After Gatsby’s death hardly anyone shows up to his funeral which goes to show that money cannot buy one’s happiness, few people showed up because they were mainly attracted to his money, wealth and parties but not to the man he is.

As seen in The Great Gatsby, money cannot buy happiness. Why is that? In 2017, a group of university students attending The University of California researched why money cannot and will not buy someone’s happiness. ‘We got interested in this idea because there is abundant evidence that higher socioeconomic status higher income or wealth, higher education does not boost subjective well-being (or happiness) much at all. Yet at the same time, many theories suggest that higher status should boost happiness,’ said Cameron Anderson, a psychological scientist at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, in a journal news release. The analysts put their thought under serious scrutiny in a progression of studies. In the first place, they reviewed 80 understudies from 12 bunches on the campus.

The measure of regard the understudies got from their friends, known as their sociometric status, was determined dependent on companion evaluations, self-reports and the number of administration positions the understudies held. The specialists likewise considered the understudies’ family unit salary and got some information about their social prosperity. They found the adoration the understudies got from their friends anticipated their social prosperity. Their riches or salary did not. At the point when the specialists extended the gathering of members in another examination, they saw comparative outcomes. In the last report, the scientists pursued alumni understudies in business college. They found the MBA understudies’ social prosperity was attached to changes in the profound respect they felt from their companions when graduation. They noted regard had more to do with the understudy’s prosperity after graduation than how a lot of cash they made. ‘One of the reasons why money doesn’t buy happiness is that people quickly adapt to the new level of income or wealth. Lottery winners, for example, are initially happy but then return to their original level of happiness quickly,’ he concluded. ‘It’s possible that being respected, having influence and being socially integrated just never gets old,’ Anderson said.

In conclusion, money definitely cannot buy happiness, love, or anything that humans need to survive in this fast past and vast changing world. Sadly for Gatsby, he did not come to terms with this theory developed throughout history and was indeed lost and never gained his full potential in life. Perhaps, if Gatsby had realized that sooner the whole storyline could have been different and maybe his ending would have been better. “So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back into the past”, F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby.


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