The American Dream in the Great Gatsby

Modern English and American Novel Course Title:
Course Instructor: Dr. Alaeddin Sadiq
Student Name: Huda Adnan Hassan

Idealism and death of the American Dream in the Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Idealism, in philosophy, is any view that stresses the central role of the ideal or the spiritual in the interpretation of experience. It may hold that the world or reality exists essentially as spirit or consciousness, that abstractions and laws are more fundamental in reality than sensory things, or, at least, that whatever exists is known in dimensions that are chiefly mental—through and as ideas.

According to Merriam Webster dictionary, idealism is the attitude of a person who believes that it is possible to live according to very high standards of behavior and honesty.

The Great Gatsby is a novel about the passions of the idealistic Jay Gatsby. One place that Gatsby’s idealism fails him is in his vision of a perfect relationship. He envisions that life would be perfect if Daisy were to love him. His ideal woman would be true to him if only he could prove worthy of her. He does not consider the reality of Daisy’s marriage or how her husband will feel about the affair. Nor does he consider that Daisy may have trouble hiding her love.   Another thing in the relationship is that Gatsby does not have the ideal background he has invented. He has no wealthy family background or Oxford education. The source of his wealth is through dishonest means, associated with gambling and bootlegging. This illicit trade debases his utopian outlook. Daisy’s marriage first gets in the way of Gatsby’s perfect happiness and this indirectly leads to his violent death. Because of his criminal friends and his illegal connections, he is without mourners at his funeral. His partners all leave Gatsby and forget about him when he can no longer work for them. This was not the ideal vision that Gatsby had lived for.

Jay Gatsby of The Great Gatsby is an idealist. This holds...