Why Did Gatsby Fail To Achieve The American Dream?

Updated 30 September, 2023
Jay Gatsby’s pursuit of wealth becomes so intense that he loses sight of his dream. Due to this, Gatsby’s American Dream is bound to fail. Gatsby’s blind lust for money and love hinder his ability to pursue his dream at a life with Daisy, which ultimately leads to his downfall.
Detailed answer:

Jay Gatsby spent his whole life earning the wealth and reputation that he thought would win Daisy over, and get the connection they had before he went to war back. “He had come a long way to this blue lawn and his dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it”, was a quote spoken by Nick Carraway in the book. It portrays the impression that although Gatsby was rich and could afford anything, he would never be able to get the thing he wanted the most, Daisy. Daisy is the final puzzle piece to his grand vision – attaining Daisy will open the door towards his joining the aristocratic class, something his wealth alone doesn't allow. Daisy will give him status, Daisy will bring back the past, Daisy will give his counterfeit life authenticity, Daisy will make him happy. Daisy is Gatsby's idea of the American Dream.
However, Daisy never wanted to admit to her husband, Tom, that she had feelings for Gatsby, no matter how much money Gatsby had, which meant he never got his happiness. This situation shows that money doesn’t bring happiness, as Jay could buy anything he wanted, except for the person he wanted. Connections and relationships with people bring happiness, and they are not something you can buy. Gatsby died unhappy with no friends or family because of his money.
The Great Gatsby is a novel that demonstrates the failure of the American Dream in post-war America because of people’s misunderstanding of it and their materialistic view of modern life. The early twentieth century saw the corruption of the American Dream which was interpreted by people of a search for an easy, materialistic, often immoral and spiritually quite decadent life.

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