Importancy of The Great Gatsby Symbolism

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In Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, the wealthiest members of the 1920s New York society are predominantly represented. Despite their copious amounts of money, they are not illustrated as having anything worth aspiring to. Instead, the newly rich character’s unfavourable attributes are put on display: carelessness, restlessness and arrogance. Ironically, the most tragic element of The Great Gatsby is how Jay Gatsby’s, protagonist and self-made millionaire, death was caused by his good qualities (dedication, politeness and romantic love), as he attempts the shield the love of his life. 

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Daisy Buchanan from being blamed for killing Myrtle, when Tom and Daisy Buchanan’s bad qualities (selfishness, shallowness and sardonic) allow them to get away with their misdeeds without accountability both physically and psychologically. For that reason, the higher the class, the higher the power. Despite Gatsby’s success with all his earnt money and possessions, he always remained within the low social class that he was born into. 

Gatsby believed that wealth was the solution to all things, however, he remained incompetent in achieving happiness and a sense of belonging. Fitzgerald is sending the message to us readers that no matter how hard we try to belong in a higher society, it is worthless as society’s stereotypes are unbreakable. This novel is relevant to society today, as the gap between the poor and the wealthy remains to this day. The destructive power the higher classes have is also represented through symbolism.

The Great Gatsby has a great ability to employ symbolism through Gatsby’s yellow car, the yellow buttons on Daisy’s dress, Myrtle’s yellow house, and Nick’s description of flowers “smelling like pale gold”. Gold symbolises luxury and wealth, while yellow acts as a motif to display the exploitation, covetousness, death and materialism that is occurring among the wealthy. More, on the contrary, yellow appears like gold, but it is not. It is fake.

The Castle, in contrast to The Great Gatsby, provides a far more relatable interpretation by focusing on the most prevalent class: the working-class. The representation of the working-class is one of the most prominent elements in this film. In the same way, the unfavourable representation associated with a higher class is also revealed in The Castle, inviting us viewers to feel sympathy towards the working class. 

Additionally, the film offers representation on the working-class that is stereotypical whilst associating with degrading beliefs. Their lack of sophistication, education and monetary possessions are strongly emphasised and used as a source of humour. However, this representation is alleviated by the solid family ties between the Kerrigans which leads to a strong sense of belonging. Regardless of how fascinating we might find the Kerrigan’s, we are essentially associating with and relating to their precarious existence.

The recurring themes related to The Castle and the real-world relevance to the plotline is the sarcastic depiction of suburban working-class living, the avarice of broad associations and the apathy for the rights and sentiments of the particular. Admittedly, victory is not earned through hard work, determination or honesty, it is earned through knowing the right people. In the film, the role of class in our justice system is difficult to disregard, by depicting the challenges that are experienced by the working-class when they are forced to confront corporate identities with the aim to cause disempowerment. More specifically, the Kerrigan’s were marginalised and voiceless in the courtroom. Sitch is encouraging us to share the belief that regardless of a person’s individual’s abilities, all people should be entitled to equal opportunities – I strongly agree.   

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