Gatsby: Love and Gatsby’s Dreams Essay

Submitted By yanamazurkevich
Words: 956
Pages: 4

Jay Gatsby’s dream consisted of attainable yet temporary goals. He envisioned his life to be composed of materialistic possessions and perceptible riches, such as an expensive car and a large mansion. Though he has always wanted to become rich, Gatsby’s main motivation for acquiring wealth was Daisy. He instantly fell in love with her and her image, and in order to show her that he was good enough for her, he lied about his background and introduced himself as an opulent nouveau riche. Gatsby’s fictional desire for a perfect woman and a wealthy lifestyle stood in the way of the reality of things. As a 17-year-old boy, Gatsby’s dreams were made up of prosperous living. His goal was simple: to become rich and successful. However, Gatsby’s idea of “rich and successful” did not come through hard work. He was so ashamed with his family background that he had decided to make up a completely different identity for himself. Gatsby’s “parents were shiftless and unsuccessful farm people — his imagination had never really accepted them as his parents at all” (98). Thus, Gatsby began to acquire money through bootlegging and illegal activities. Gatsby wanted an “old money” lifestyle, but the idea of “old money” was not inherited or paid off by him unlike by most “old money” people. Gatsby yearned for a life that he had always desired to have instead for a life that would suit him for the person he is. With the idea of becoming rich in his head still cooking, Gatsby then meets Daisy for the first time before leaving to fight in the World War I. Without the feel of wealth at his fingertips, Gatsby decides that Daisy is the woman of his dreams. Though he may have been in love with her, he was not aware of the expectations that Daisy could not live up to. He saw Daisy as luxurious, classy, and elegant, and she was also “the first ‘nice’ girl he had ever known” (148). When Gatsby finally begins to live a high-class lifestyle, he realizes that Daisy looked much more desirable in his imagination compared to actually having her by his side. Daisy only seemed surreal to Gatsby when he did not posses so much wealth. Gatsby also set high expectations for Daisy. When Gatsby challenges Daisy to leave Tom, Daisy simply cannot do that. She has gotten used to living her life like she has always lived it: with Tom. Even if she is not completely happy with Tom, Gatsby asking her for such a change scares her and so she runs off. Gatsby knew that “there must have been moments even that afternoon when Daisy tumbled short of his dreams - not through her own fault, but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion” (95). Daisy is not as perfect as Gatsby makes her to be; she is too human to meet Gatsby’s expectations. His expectations had simply fallen short of what he had dreamed about Daisy when they were just both teenagers. The way Gatsby pursues getting Daisy does not pay off in the end. He builds a wall to block his true identity from Daisy in order to make her like him. He believed wealth would attract her more to the person that he is, and Daisy did love the persona that Gatsby presented to her. Running back to Daisy after the war with no money would expose Gatsby as a fake. Therefore, Gatsby starts a new life for himself just for the sake of getting back Daisy. In the end, though, Gatsby attains nothing. Daisy decides to stay with Tom…