The United States was a land filled with various opportunities in the 1920s. World War I was over and a multitude of people from all over the globe were coming to the United States vying for a new beginning. These people were all enchanted but the idea of “The American Dream”. The American Dream is the idea that every United States citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative.
It does not matter where you came from, all you need is a passion to succeed.
This idea played a role in The Great Gatsby through the characters, symbolism, and settings in the story.
The American Dream was an important part of the characters in the story. This idea greatly influenced their choices from how they lived to how they behaved. The wealthiest characters were Daisy and Tom Buchanan, and Jay Gatsby. These three believed they could do anything because they were in a class higher than everyone else.
They only cared about what was occurring at the moment and never worried about the consequences of their actions. They were very greedy people and only cared about their possessions. This goes with the belief of the American Dream and that you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it. An example of this is how Tom cheats on Daisy with Myrtle Wilson. He does this because he only sees Daisy one of his belongings. ‘I first met Tom Buchanan’s mistress.
The fact that he had one was insisted upon wherever he was known. His acquaintances resented the fact that he turned up in popular restaurants with her and, leaving her at a table, sauntered about, chatting with whomsoever he knew’ (Fitzgerald, 27). Despite Tom and Myrtle being a part of two different social classes he continues to see her behind Daisy’s back. He does not care about his choices at the moment but they will eventually come back to bite him in the butt. Every weekend Gatsby throws outrageous parties to impress Daisy…