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Word Count: 1,333
F Scott Fitzgeralds novel The Great Gatsby is a glimpse into the elite social circles of Long Island society during the prosperous period of the 1920s In this decade a class of new rich was born and the class of old rich enjoyed continued prosperity Gatsby showcases the conflict between the two groups as the newly rich tried to carve a place for themselves in the exclusive social circles of those who inherited their wealth The book concerns itself with Jay Gatsbys attempt to transcend social boundaries and enter this exclusive circle to live the American dream of betterment Fitzgerald shows that this dream has been made corrupt and unattainable by the hunger for power and insecurities of the often immoral old rich Despite living in such a prosperous time it is impossible for Gatsby originally a poor man from North Dakota to be accepted in privileged societyIn the first chapter of the novel the reader is introduced to the narrator Nick Carraway and to many of the storys central characters all of which come from privileged backgrounds It is only at the end of the chapter that we meet Jay Gatsby Nick observes him walking alone in the early eveningSomething in his leisurely movements and the secure position of his feet upon the lawn suggested that it was Mr Gatsby himself come out to determine what share was his of our local heavenshe stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious wayI glanced seawardand distinguished nothing except a single green light minute and far away Fitzgerald 25-26This passage is extremely symbolic of Gatsbys character and his fated inability to have what he wants most His expansive mansion makes it clear that financially Gatsby is very well off He throws lavish parties every weekend and his wealth appears limitless As he strolls through his property he seems to have an air of confidence until he spies the distant green light across the
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