22nd June 2017

Practice Essay

Describe at least one important character in the written text.
Explain how this character is revealed to you throughout the text.”Illusion is needed to disguise the emptiness within.” The novel The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, walks us through a fascinating 1920’s summer in New York. The Great Gatsby follows three main characters, Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan and Nick Carraway through their summer ventures and their true characters are revealed. By examining Gatsby, Daisy and Nick it is clear that they all living their lives as an illusion.

Gatsby represents illusion by the fact that he cannot repeat the past and reinvent himself. The main character, Gatsby has created an illusion of himself to try and capture his dreams.
Jay Gatsby created a fake persona to cover up his past, a person that he thought Daisy wanted, a rich high social class gentle-man. But he cannot quite get there, even after he tries and tries, it becomes impossible for him to reach that top class and to reach his dream of Daisy.
Through out the novel we find out the truth about Gatsby and his illusion after as his walls come crashing down, one after another. At the end of the book he is said to have “paid a high price for living to long with a single dream.”
After 5 years of being away at war Gatsby still grasps what he and Daisy used to have. Gatsby is so set on having Daisy in his life he creates a new persona that he thinks will draw her back into his fake life. He becomes wealthy by illegally selling and trading, and buys a exquisite mansion directly across the bay from Daisy. By only focusing on his ‘single dream’ of having Daisy in his life, he forgot about reality and what was happening in the real world. Gatsby’s dream led him to his own death because he was not aware that everyone else had moved on, and everyone else was living in the moment and not caught up in their own past. The ‘high price’ that Gatsby paid is is his life.
Because Gatsby had created such a realistic character, everyone originally believed him, but when the truth shone through people lost trust in him and Daisy “vanished into her rich house, into her rich, full life, leaving Gatsby- nothing”.
Daisy Buchanan come across as a very plain and blank person, her feelings are very hidden but the only thing that she really cares about is money and status. When she had the chance to choose between Gatsby and Tom she chose Tom because of his guaranteed money and he was in the ‘old money’ social class. The quote talks about her ‘rich’ house and life. This refers to how Tom has the money and how she believes her life is perfect with him.

Fitzgerald reveals Gatsby’s character as an illusion to teach us about the idea that individuals that have un-fulfilled lives feel the need to create fake personas or details about themselves. At the start of the book Gatsby come across as a gentleman that has everything and is happy but as the novel continues this unravels and we find out that all of his mask means nothing and he is doing it all just to capture his prize, Daisy. Gatsby are an illusion, he has made himself into a different person to become ‘better’ in his eyes. He has not felt comfortable in his own life in reality, when he has poor so he has created a false personas to captivate others into his ugly, messy life.
The idea of illusion is totally relate able to our teenage generation. Teenagers are often not happy with their looks or lifestyle and we constantly feel like we are getting judged. Teenagers think care about their image and what other people think about them. Social classes are a huge part of the teenage life, this thought can also be related to the Great Gatsby, where social classes are everything and define everyone. People create an illusion about themselves to fit into these social classes by buying branded clothes or taking part in popular activities. But people eventually get tired of pretending and keeping their guards up and their true personality and image comes out, whether it is for the best or worst.

Join the conversation! 1 Comment

  1. Jessie, go back and re-read your first three sentences of the body paragraph- they are all saying the same thing. Pick ONE as your statement and take it from there.

    I am going back to what I said yesterday- you have a touch too much plot in the explanation of your evidence. How can you bring this down slightly?

    Also consider this: Gatsby lives with the dream of “a life with Daisy” for 5 years. It becomes the only thing that fuels him. Why do you think Fitzgerald kills him off after having him obsess over this dream? What is the point in Gatsby death? I believe their is a message for us there and it lies in the quote you have used “paid a high price for living too long with a single dream”. Why is it so high? You have begun to touch on this but can you develop it further?

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