Was Gatsby “great”?

Was Gatsby “great”? Yes, he was! Anyway he was an extraordinary personality even if it was a wrong way to became rich being engaged in the criminal activities. It takes a lot of efforts either you’re making big money in a honest way or by criminal business.

Gatsby was an enigma for everyone, no one knew any trustful information about him, just gossips. And I suppose you agree that you need to be something special to get so much interest from the people. Especially from the rich ones.

And one more important reason for me to call Gatsby “great”: he had a dream. And he was so dedicated to make it true, he raised himself from an ordinary Western guy to one of the most famous and rich persons of New York city.

And what was the motive for this? Love! His love and desire to make his woman happy and in order to be on the same level with her he decided to become rich. He was fascinated by luxury and the lifestyle of the rich and Gatsby was truly dedicated to make his dream come true.

I, frankly speaking, admire him for this kind of dedication and character.

But, unfortuntely for Gatsby, his dream, Daisy, was not the same girl he felt in love a long time ago. She was the same nice, beautiful and lovely girl just in his dreams.

In real life Daisy didn’t dare to leave her husband for Gatsby.

That was such a rare kind of love from Gatsby side that hard to find in real life. Despite that she stayed with her husband, Gatsby still loved her and out of his pure and true love he sacrifies himself in this case with the car accident at the end of the novel.

Despite of the fact he made his fortune by bootlegging and supposed to be a dishonest criminal this last scene showed us that Jay Gatsby was way more honest and had a true personality than Tom who lied to the Myrtle’s husband in order to take revenge and remove Gatsby from his life.

And when Jay found out that his dream no longer exists, he was so frustrated, but still waiting for her, trying to reanimate his dream, trying to save it at least in his thoughts – and here is a symbolic scene with Gatsby using his pool (though he has never used it before) and no matter that the weather was cool, it was a symbol of him trying to extend their “summer” with Daisy in his mind.

For me Jay Gatsby was the only real person in the novel, he was honest with himself, his fortune didn’t spoil him, he had just chosen a wrong dream and at the end wasn’t able to get over his failure.

Alex Gaysenok

3 thoughts on “Was Gatsby “great”?”

  1. I agree with you that Gatsby was great! Who wouldn’t want a lavish life with everyone wanting to visit your house for parties. But I might have to disagree with you on the point of him being the only real person in this novel.

    I don’t think anyone in this novel could be considered a real person.

    No one quite understood who Gatsby was, his name isn’t even Gatsby, it’s Jay Gatz. Yes, the reader finds out the meaning behind this, but it’s interesting that he changed his name, and we as the reader don’t understand exactly why.

    Gatsby having a dream and working towards is an amazing accomplishment but I don’t think that makes him the only real person. I would argue that is no real person in this novel let alone during the 1920’s for everyone wants to become rich and prosperous.

  2. I see your point but I have to disagree. Gatsby’s life does not seem as desirous to me as it does to the rest of you. He seems to me a very depressed character who although he lives surrounded by nice things and parties is actually unhappy. The first time we see him is in the library separate from the party. I also agree to some extent with Fitzgerald’s implicit criticism that men who make there money through speculation or illegal trade as Gatsby does grow to value money to much and do not value the truly important things. The scene with the uncut book symbolizes for me the fact that Gatsby has ceased to grow.

  3. I agree with you that Gatsby is the only real person in the novel. He is the only one that is made “human.” Real people make mistakes and do bad things, but are still considered trustworthy and admirable. We were able to see his pain and his self-consciousness that lead him down a bad path to earn his money. But, he’s a romantic, and wants to be with his one true love, Daisy, which is very relatable and common. He takes the fall for Myrtle’s murder because of his love for Daisy. In the end his life turned out so different than what he had expected and in real life so many people have lives that don’t turn out the way they’d hoped.

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