Gatsby Essay, Research Paper
Two Rich Americans
I love to sleep. For me, the few minutes right before I fall asleep is the most enjoyable time of the day. Lying down with my favorite pillow and oversized comforter, while watching a little television cannot be beat in my book. Well, maybe a few other things can beat it. I am not that pathetic. There are many different ?things? that propel us through each day. For each individual person, this driving force can be different. For an athlete the World Series, Super bowl, or National Championship is the ultimate goal. For a writer, having a book published a becoming a best seller can be their personal goal. For Jay Gatsby and Sara Smolinsky, the ?thing? that pushes them through each and every day was the thrill of the American Dream.
To live the American Dream is to be someone that no one expects. It means to rise above what others cannot think you can do and make a few bucks while doing it. It takes dedication and time to live out this American Dream. In no way is it like a walk in the park, either. Both Gatsby and Sara had to drive to succeed. However, this is not all of the American Dream. You need a family to live out the American Dream, with a few kids, and perhaps a little puppy. To do this, you need love in your life. Now, Gatsby and Sara may not have been aiming at raising a family, but both of them were looking for the love of their lives.
Jay Gatsby was an enigma to everyone who came in contact with him. ?I think he killed a man,? remarked a few guests at one of his galas. Just exactly what, or who, made this mysterious man tick? Well, for the really close, namely Nick Carraway and Jordan Baker, the answer was simple. Daisy did. Just to think, Gatsby put on all those parties for a girl. What is he in high school? How childish can one man be? Well, obviously not too childish, because Daisy inevitably ate it all up! ?What Beautiful shirts,? she sobbed, ?It makes me sad because I?ve never seen such beautiful shirts before? (Fitzgerald 98). It is amazing to believe that two people can be so concerned with the physical success.
Gatsby was after it, the money, the power, the House, and Daisy. Gatsby, though, had to resort to illegal activity in order to obtain his success. He bootlegged grain alcohol during the abolition. Gatsby truly lived out the American Dream. He arose from nowhere, to become one of the richest men on Long Island. Gatsby also died because of it. But in the end, he died for Daisy, which made it all worthwhile.
Sara Smolinsky was driven to succeed for a different reason. She wanted to become a ?person.? She wanted to be equal to everyone else. She was an American and she wanted to have all the same opportunities that every American should have. More importantly she wanted to prove to her family that she could succeed. From the very first money that Sara earned from selling herring, anyone could see the fire in her eyes. ?Richer than Rockefeller, I felt? (Yezierska 22). This could have said ?Richer than Gatsby.? This money, a simple quarter, would not even be spent on herself, but rather for her family. She was working to support her family. Earning the money was important to
Sara. Earning the Money. She earned this money. She paid for the herring, not because she HAD to, but because SHE had to. ?I want to go into business like a person? (Yezierska 21). She was no beggar. Not anymore.
More important than the money, was the knowledge. Her desire was to become a teacher, and no one was going to stop her. Certainly, not the fact that she had absolutely no money or that she was intimidated by the other college students. She had a goal and she set out to do it, no exceptions. All the while doing this, Sara was looking for someone to love. She had no desire to go run off and get married like her sisters at the will of her father. Rather, she wanted someone that she could fall in love with. Her goal first and foremost was to become a teacher. Only after that did she realize that there was something missing. She thought of her father?s words. ?A woman without a man is less than nothing? (Yezierska 21). She found her someone. This man, Hugo Seelig, kept the same flame inside of him, the thirst to teach others. After finding him, her goal was complete. Sara was complete.
Both Jay Gatsby and Sara Smolinsky had a goal. Their goals were quite similar, to live out the American dream. Both of them did just what they set out to do. Gatsby accomplished all he could, even winning back his one and only true love, Daisy Buchanan. Sara accomplished all she could and more. There were differences though in their paths and motives to their success. Gatsby was out to for someone else, namely Daisy. Sara was pushed from within. In the end though, they were two rich Americans, Gatsby with his mansion overlooking the Sound, and Sara with her abundance of knowledge, money (although not as much as Gatsby, to Sara it was all she needed), and her love. They were both on top of the World. Only one?s life came crashing down to a floating end, while the other was sure to keep on climbing for as long as she desired.