The Great Gatsby Upper Class Analysis

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The Great Gatsby and the Vices of the Upper Class
At its base level, The Great Gatsby is a novel that highlights the disillusioned love between a rich woman, and a man willing to do anything to appear rich. The main characters, however, lack that idealistic romance and are significantly flawed. Fitzgerald sheds a light on the sociology of the upper class- the underbelly of the relationships between America’s most distinguished citizens. Whether it is materialism, selfishness, ignorance, or a mix of all three, each of Fitzgerald’s main characters have vices that plague them. Through the characterization, Fitzgerald illuminates the hollowness and corruption of the upper class.
Tom Buchanan is one of the shallowest characters in the novel. He
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In order to amass his wealth, he distributes alcohol and participates in organized crime through the Mafia. In addition, Gatsby refuses to acknowledge his former life and therefore his parents. When Tom and Gatsby are arguing over Daisy, Tom brings up Gatsby’s past: ‘He and this Wolfshiem bought up a lot of side-street drug stores here and in Chicago and sold grain alcohol over the counter... I picked him for a bootlegger the first time I saw him and I wasn’t far wrong,’ (133). Gatsby’s dream to win over Daisy started with climbing the social ladder to be a part of the upper class. The quickest way to compile large sum of money was through bootlegging during the prohibition era. Gatsby is more than willing to go to illegal lengths to win Daisy over, and this shady past is exactly what Tom brings up to portray Gatsby as an unsuitable lover. Daisy eventually rebukes Gatsby due to his involvement in organized crime, and the lengths Gatsby went to impress Daisy are ultimately worthless. In addition, Gatsby never acknowledges his parents or spends time with his father. Gatsby is so desperate to fit the standard of the upper class that he shuns his family completely, and never refers to them at all. Gatsby is so obsessed with being portrayed as rich that he resorts to organized crime and rejects his …show more content…
She grows up privileged and spoiled, and continues living a materialistic life. Daisy values her money over her family. For example, Daisy ultimately marries and stats with Tom due to his impressive wealth. Daisy meets Gatsby as a teenager and promises to wait for him until he returns home from the war. When Gatsby accidently gets sent to Oxford after the war, Daisy can wait no longer, and marries the rich, brutish Tom Buchanan. As their relationship progress, Tom becomes unfaithful. Tom makes no effort to hide his mistress- they are often found together at fancy restaurants, and Daisy would have to be completely ignorant to not notice her husband's cheating ways. Despite this, Daisy never brings up Tom's ulterior relationship with Tom. One might believe this apprehensiveness is due to fear of abuse, but even after the scandal with Gatsby, Daisy is unafraid of being physically hurt by Tom. In addition, Daisy treats her daughter more as an accessory than a child. There is evidence of Daisy's indifference when Nick asked about her daughter, "I waited but she didn’t say any more, and after a moment I returned rather feebly to the subject of her daughter. ‘I suppose she talks, and—eats, and everything,’” (16). Daisy knows so little about her daughter, and can only respond with evidence that her daughter can complete basic human functions. She has made no effort to