I have to write a 40 page long, call it, study on the theme ?Materialism in The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald? that is divided into three main research questions:
1. Characterization of The Roaring Twenties (politics; economy; culture; without making any references to the novel)
2. Theme Analysis of The Great Gatsby (identifying themes, placing them into context
, interpreting them)
3. Presentation of Materialism through Symbolism.
I?m already finishing the first and third research questions, but, because of time reasons, I need You to work out the second, I repeat, only the second research question (Theme Analysis). I will build on the paper you will send me, and re-write or re-construct what I already wrote to maintain adequate linking and coherence (where necessary).
About your theme:
In the theme analysis you should concentrate on the questions whether and to what degree materialism is concerned in the themes of the novel, and how it is presented by Fitzgerald. Please, do not, by any means, list all the themes of The Great Gatsby, only the ones that deal with materialism. Even though a theme is off the subject, you can still write about it if you show how it is related to materialism. For example, The Corruption of The American Dream by Materialism; or Materialism as the Main Reason of Moral Decay; etc.) Here I note, that you can use the term ?materialism? in a broader sense, and also explore themes connected with, for instance, money, love of money, power of money, wealth, corruption, greed etc.
You can examine the novel as Fitzgerald?s response to the growing materialism and corruption of the 1920?s (using historical and sociological critical approaches) as well as you can, isolated from any context
, justify a theme by whatever critical approach or argument (formalist, reader-response criticism, but still keeping impersonal tone ? ?it is said, we can assume?, etc.) Please, when you support your points in social context
, or try to link some passages of the novel with events of history or vice versa, do not start to describe The Roaring Twenties as I already did it in my first research question; instead, find or write 2 or 3 very significant, relevant, and expressive sentences about the happenings of the 1920?s that your idea/passage/hypothesis can be linked with, or supported by. You can use analytic, synthetic, inductive, deductive, or any research methods ? you can declare a theme or an idea first and then go to prove and explain it, or, you can let various sources and references guide you to an idea in the end.
1. Find a theme about materialism, or an aspect of materialism that you think is reflected in the novel and you will be exploring (for example, old money vs. new money; ?a dream based on materialism will in the end be destructive?; etc.); or include further research questions, for example, ?What happens after somebody reaches such an absurd level of wealth that he does not have to care about money anymore? What should one do after that ? besides celebrating his own wealth as The Great Gatsby?s characters do? Can money buy love and happiness? Is money essential part of happiness? What will be the destiny of the individual (James Gatsby) who attempts to unite idealism and materialism to find happiness? Whatever.
2. Explore, explain, analyze, interpret, comment on? (Why is this theme significant? What might Fitzgerald want to express with that? Why? Is it related to the 1920?s? How? )
3. How is this theme presented/reflected/evidenced in the novel? (Looking at the internal action of The Great Gatsby, how does Fitzgerald demonstrate this idea?)
4. the same as above
In other words, you should write about what kind of ideas concerning materialism might Fitzgerald want to express in The Great Gatsby, and how did he do that.
Only web-sources are accepted! Unfortunately, I have to turn in the photocopies of all the pages I cited from to be checked. As I do not have access to American books, newspapers, publications, please, use only web sources that are accessible for any Internet user. Much has been written on this subject; I found a lot of pages dealing with theme analysis of The Great Gatsby, but neither of them focuses on materialism to the extent I need. You can use as many sources as you wish (as many as it is reasonable in case of a 14 page long paper), but the paper should not be ?crammed with references but lacking a clear point.? Materialism should be the leading idea that keeps this paper coherent and relevant to the theme. Every time you cite from the novel, please, mark the number of page. I?m using the version ?Wordsworth Editions 1993?, if this version is not available to you, no problem. I will find and re-write the number of cited pages. Also do not cite more than 3 lines (not four); if it is more than 3 lines, use ellipses to drop parts of less importance, or you can paraphrase as well (even half a page). Include, please, foot- and endnotes.
Page 1 ? introduction, general facts, formulation of research questions
Page 2-12 ? theme analysis
Page 13-14 ? conclusion, summary of results, (only here, first person ? ?I? ? must be used)
As you may have noticed by now, I?m not a native speaker of English, so I hope I didn?t write anything unclear or confusing. Thank you for your attention.
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