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How Money Widens the Gap of Loneliness in the Great Gatsby

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Essay title: How Money Widens the Gap of Loneliness in the Great Gatsby

The 1920’s in the united States was a time of economic growth in which people lived frivolous lives by believing their money would make them happy. It was a time of alcoholic prohibition and a time of emancipation for women. Thus, it was a time of parties, drinking and wild women for those who could afford it. Those who were at the bottom of society were constantly striving for the top of the economic ladder.

This time era, in Long Island, is the basis of F. Scott’s Fitzgerald’s book, The Great Gatsby. It has become one of the great classics in American literature and is well known for its commentary on social status. Through the introduction of many “status” oriented characters, Fitzgerald comments on the social lives of those living in the twenties. But does it go beyond the social status issues it addresses, and focus on something deeper? Yes, the characters may focus on their constant climb to economic well being, but more importantly they reveal a theme of The Great Gatsby: in the midst of man’s heart is loneliness and the need to be needed, which is surrounded by the greed of money. “Gatsby offers a detailed social picture of the stresses of an advanced capitalist culture in the early 1920s” (Fitter), “Fitzgerald discloses in these people a meanness of spirit, carelessness and absence of loyalties. He cannot hate them, for they are dumb in their insensate selfishness, and only to be pitied.” (Clark).

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