The Great Gatsby Essay, Research Paper
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald was an American writer of novels, and short stories that epitomized the mood and manners of the 1920’s, the Jazz Age, as it was called. Fitzgerald was born on September 24, 1896, in Saint Paul, Minnesota, and attended Princeton University, where he mostly ignored formal study, instead receiving his education from writers and critics, such as Edmund Wilson, who remained his lifelong friend. In 1917 he quit Princeton to take an army commission, and in training camps he revised the first draft of his novel This Side of Paradise (1920). While at a camp in Alabama, he fell in love with a 18-year-old named Zelda Sayre, who, as the archetypal flapper, was to become as integral a part of Fitzgerald s fiction as he was. In 1924 the Fitzgeralds left their Long Island home for the French Riviera, not to return permanently to the U.S. until 1931. In five months he completed The Great Gatsby. Although it is generally regarded as his masterpiece, Gatsby sold poorly, thus accelerating the disintegration of his personal life. It is a sensitive, satiric fable of the pursuit of success and the collapse of the American dream.
Nick Carraway, the narrator is a nice honest person that listens to everyone s problems. Tom and Daisy Buchanan, a wealthy playboy and his beautiful wife, are Nick s cousins; Nick does not like Tom too much. It is hinted that there are problems between Daisy and Tom; later it is revealed that Tom is having an affair under Daisy s nose with a woman name Myrtle Wilson. They end up having a fight in which Tom breaks her nose. A vert well-known man named Gatsby has a huge party; though he does not socialize. Little is known about him at first. Later, we find out about Gatsby s life, how he went to Oxford, inherited his fortune from his family etc. At the party, Gatsby introduces Mr. Wolfsheim who is involved in organized crime, which indicates that Gatsby could be involved too. Nick set up a meeting between Gatsby and Daisy, who end up having an affair also. Gatsby tells Daisy to tell Tom that she never loved him, and she does. Meanwhile, Wilson discovers that Myrtle is unfaithful and before long he had her locked up. After she got locked up, Myrtle tried to escape, but while escaping, Gatsby s car, driven by Daisy hits her and kills her. However, because of a big misunderstanding, Wilson kills Gatsby because it was his car that killed Myrtle and later ends up committing suicide.
The storyline of this book is somewhat believable. I can accept that parts about people having affairs and the rich having lavish parties in New York. However, I kind of find it hard to believe that al of these adults would have such big misunderstandings which would lead to the death of others. Like when Gatsby s car hit Myrtle; O don t think that Wilson would have came right out and killed him. In my opinion, an adult would have taken this issue to court or to the local police. Other than that, this book is very believable.
The time period that Fitzgerald wrote this book in definitely had a lot to do with the storyline of the Great Gatsby. As a matter of fact, the novel sounds a lot like his personal life at the time. His marriage was going through a lot of problems, just as everyone s was in the book. Thus, making the novel a little biased. He was going through a tough time when he wrote the book, so it looks to me as if it was a tragedy. I really do believe that he based this book on he personal encounters though. Just like in the novel when I think it was Daisy was only eighteen years old when Gatsby wanted to marry her, Fitzgerald s wife, Zelda was eighteen when they married as well.
Overall, I think that The Great Gatsby is a very good book. F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote a very meaningful novel. It reflected many of the faults of man during the 1920’s. It was a very interesting story to read, as a matter of fact, I think that Spielberg should make this book into a movie. So on a scale of one to ten, I would probably give this book an eight.