*** PLEASE PAY SPECIFIC ATTENTION TO THE THESIS! ARGUMENTS MUST BE BASED ON THE SPECIFICS OF THE THESIS OUTLINE BELOW!****
Analyze the text and used limited research to support the argument stated in the thesis proposal.
In the Great Gatsby
F.Scott Fitzgerald presents us with a protagonist, Jay Gatsby
who is the embodiment of American self-(re)invention. In an essay, analyze THREE (3) ways in which Gatsby
(re)-invents himself. How successful is he at each attempt? Use research to illustrate how America (Especially New York in the 1920's allowed for a character like Gatsby
The structure of this essay is based on a 3 part thesis that answers the above question directly. The argument will be built by body paragraphs containing quotations of the text including page numbers and parenthesis for all quotes.
You will be referring to at least 6 outside sources in order to support the main idea. Of these 6 total sources 3 must be books and 3 must be reputable internet sources (no wikipedia or blogs).
PLEASE FOLLOW ALL MLA FORMAT GUIDELINES
***THE THESIS PROPOSAL:
The Re-Invention of the Great James Gatz
! The strong economic boom following the Great War gave birth to a time known as ?The Roaring 20?s?.This time of financial resurgence also gave birth to Jay Gatsby
, a opportunist who was able to re-invent himself as a result of the times. Gatsby
was born into a poor farming family in the midwest. After returning from the war, Gatsby
is determined to elevate his social status in order to pursue his love (Daisy). Our protagonist however has always had intentions to re-invent himself even before meeting Daisy and we see this through his early examples written in the back of ?Poor Richards Almanac? a self-improvement manual published by Benjamin Franklin. Based on analysis of Gatsby
, one could deduct that his entire being is dedicated to the search and desire for something more. This psyche can be attributed to many factors of the time which lead to the incredible irresponsibility that inevitably had an effect of the economic- depression that shorty ensued.
Examples of Gatsby?s self Re-Invention:
1 - In the earliest example we see, Gatsby
(then James Gatz) as a young boy growing up on a farm in the midwest. He is unhappy with his life as a poor farmer and somehow finds a book called Poor Richard?s Almanac. This book was written by Benjamin Franklin and its purpose was to influence the reader to be a better person by following a regiment of daily routines. At the end of the book (physically), we learn that the young Gatz scribbled his routine which featured activities such as elocution leading us to understand his intentions of social elevation.
2 - After returning from the war, Gatz is focused on how he can continue his pursuit of a better life. He has already met Daisy, the woman who fuels his desire for a more prestigious position in society and he is trying to find ways to earn money. He gets lucky when one day he saves a wealthy man from sinking in his boat. From that point on James Gatz is Jay Gatsby
. This seemingly innocent happenstance was the catalyst that allowed Gatsby
to exist. Being an opportunist, Gatsby
becomes friends with the wealthy man and is able to start working in the then illegal alcohol distribution business. At the time people who manufactured and sold alcohol were known as bootleggers and thats what Gatsby
3- After earning a tremendous fortune by result of unscrupulous business practices, Gatsby
tries to go through his final Re-Invention. This final phase is to wipe away the stained history that got him to his current position and project himself as an interesting socialite who enjoys the company of others. This is all a facade since the real intentions of this master manipulator are to win the love Daisy, the reward for his transformation through the social hierarchy that was ever so evident during the 1920?s.
****THE BELOW QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED AS PART OF ARGUMENT DEVELOPMENT___ USE THESE QUESTIONS TO INFORM RESEARCH AND ESTABLISH WORK CITED PAGE BASED ON RESEARCH MATERIAL***
- The 1920?s as a time for Re-Invention. How was this possible? What was the economic climate?
- How do returning soldiers acclimate back into normal society after fighting in WW1?
- How has Prohibition lead to the possibility for Gatsby
to Re-Invent himself?
- What was the socio-economic geography of greater NYC during this time.
- What is the distinction between New Money and Old Money? What characters are examples of each?
- What lead to the cause of great economic prosperity known as the ?roaring 20?s??
- How did the Flapper Movement signify ?Re-Invention??
- Was Re-Invention a trend of the times (a sort of Zeitgeist) or was it unique to Gatsby
- Was the death of Gatsby
a foreshadowing of what would come during the Crash of 1929?
- Were parties like Gatsby?s popular at the time? Based on the answer to this question, how did these parties help Gatsby
with his self re-invention?
- What is Poor Richard?s Almanac? What does it say? How is this reference important when understanding the evolution of Gatsby
- Were there any other characters who have gone through self re-invention? Who? How?
- What was the Volstead Act? Why Was it created? Was it successful at what it intended to do?
- What is the meaning of the 59th Street bridge both figuratively and practically?
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