Francis Scott Fitzgerald And The Great Gatsby

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The Great Gatsby is a popular novel that was written by Francis Scott Fitzgerald and is based around a long lost relationship between two old lovers and a new friendship that has bloomed as a result of it. This novel brings you back to an era revolved around jazz giving you an insight on how life used to be back then without personally having to experience it first hand.

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Francis Scott Fitzgerald was born on September 24, 1896 in the city of St. Paul, Minnesota and died on December 21, 1940 at just the early age of 44. Although, throughout the beginning of Fitzgerald’s’ life was spent along with his parents living off the little inheritance of his mother he was said to be very ambitious and smart he was also known as being the pride and joy of both his parents. He attended Princeton University to continue his education and pursue his dream of writing, but later experienced academic probation leading him to decide on dropping out of college. Consequently he saw the only choice he had was to join the army during World War 1 which was a decision that wasn’t taken lightly. Before his departure he decided to finish writing a novel and submitted it, although it was rejected by the publishing company this gave him more of a reason to become even more determined as a hard worker and make his accomplishments known. Once he came back he continued to pursue his dreams in the writing industry making it his first priority to succeed.

He became well known at the age of 24 after his first novel The Side of Paradise became very successful through the eyes of many. But his first success his work after was never seen as good enough leading to no resignation towards them. He got married to a women named Zeda but throughout their relationship they experienced a lot of problems with one another. Zeda had an affair going on while he was gone for work to avoid the lonesomeness she was said to be experiencing. While this was going on the married couple also had a young daughter who had no knowledge of what her parents were going through. Fitzgerald began to experiencing writer’s block and to add even more to that problem his wife was diagnosed with having mental illnesses causing him to turn to alcohol due to his depression as well as stress to cope with everything it all went downhill from there leading to an unfortunate death. Sadly, his work wasn’t seen as much of a success until after his passing the most popular novel around the world being known as The Great Gatsby which was able to capture the attention of all ages.

Four novels were able to be completed during Fitzgerald’s life the fifth and final novel he was working on was never finished due to his early passing. The novels consisted of “This Side of Paradise,” “The Beautiful and Damned,” “The Great Gatsby,” “Tender is the Night,” and “The Love of the Last Tycoon” which was the one who was unfortunately uncompleted. The Great Gatsby is a story based on the act of rekindling old love. The storyline took place during the 1920’s which was known as the Jazz age. One of the main characters Nick Carraway moves to Manhattan when his dreams of being a newspaper editor doesn’t work out well in his hometown he chooses to live across his cousin, Daisy, who he has not been in contact with since he was younger and her husband Tom.

Throughout this novel there are many different emotions that can be experienced not only through the characters, but with the reader’s own personal ones as well. Such as when Nick catches Tom having an affair with another women although Daisy refuses to fully believe it. Gatsby then comes into the picture befriending Nick in hopes of getting closer to Daisy who he has been in love with more than half his life, Nick then learns of the the love story between his beloved cousin and now bestfriend. Gatsby realizes that Nick is his only true friend and that they didn’t just become close friends with him because he was wealthy which he was really appreciative of. It later becomes known that Gatsby had only throw extravagant parties in hopes of Daisy showing up and he never revealed himself or showed his face till he was positive she was there. Once, Nick gets Gatsby and Daisy together they ignite their old feelings towards one another spending time with each other anytime they could which causes Gatsby to fall more in love with her than he already is and becomes determined to do anything in his power to make her happy. Finally, Tom found out about the love affair and attempted to get rid of Gatsby due to his deep hatred for him even though all along he had been cheating on his own wife when they had a child together. When it comes down to choosing between Gatsby and Tom, Daisy chooses Tom no matter how he treated her causing Gatsby to feel betrayed for loving someone who just used him at the end leaving him completely heartbroken. After, this Nick and Gatsby wait for Daisy’s call but it never comes Gatsby decides to go for a swim to cool off when he is horrifically shot and killed, his murder consequently kills himself knowing that he will go to prison for the crime he has just committed. It is learned this incident occurred because Tom manipulated his mistress’s husband informing him that Gatsby was having an affair with her when in reality it was all him he was the reason for both deaths yet he showed no sympathy for never getting caught. Nick is devastated hearing the news of his great friends passing and prepares his funeral, but sadly no one shows up he then realized that none of Gatsby’s “friends” ever cared about him but his money they never took time to actually become his friend for how he was as an individual rather than just materialistic objects. Daisy and Tom fled the city the day of Gatsby’s murder and were never heard of again after some time Nick decides to move on with his life and stop living in grief moving back to his hometown leaving Gatsby’s mansion abandoned, people other than Nick lived their lives as if Gatsby had never existed they didn’t speak of him and pretended that they had never seen or gone to his extravagant parties.

It is believed that each of Fitzgerald’s novels revealed aspects of his life that was never seen through the public eye. Although, Fitzgerald never admitted if these rumors were true or false it was believed because of the novels having a real life situation whatever he would go through in his life he would write about it by in his novels of course having a twist to them he would develop different character names but the same storyline each character represented a person in his life. Every novel he wrote had a romantic feel towards them. Fitzgerald gets a lot of praise for Gatsby till this day because of the unique structure of capturing the reader’s attention and being able to keep it throughout the whole novel no matter the age readers are captivated. This book gave great details of how life was in the 1920’s and involves a romantic relationship between Jay Gatsby and Daisy meanwhile giving an insight into the strange friendship between Jay and Nick who happens to be daisy’s cousin. A person is able to learn a great deal of things through this novel such as, money can’t buy happiness and not all people who are there for you now will be there for you at the end which you can see an example of when Gatsby gets murdered and no one besides Nick attends the funeral. Sadly, Fitzgerald died believing he was a failure to his writing he wasn’t fortunate to experience all the praise his work received after his sudden death. Such as, the accomplishment of Gatsby being turned into a remarkable film a complete resemblance as the novel itself getting awards and allowing people to want to read the novel and experience the film as well to compare the two side by side.

This novel has done a phenomenal job at capturing the time period the story was revolved around which can be learned throughout the reading as the roaring 20’s or also commonly known as the Jazz Age and/or time period of corruption of the so called “American Dream” everyone wanted to so desperately experience. The Jazz Age took place right after World War 1 and ended in beginning stages of The Great Depression, although the Jazz Age was seen as a cultural time period as well as a movement that had left an impact in history. Dance styles and jazz music such as; the blues, soul music, etc started to have a major influence in people’s everyday lives during this time. This era had a positive effect on people’s lives in the sense that wealth had nearly doubled in size causing people to move away along with their families from rural areas being farms and into bigger cities before the great depression started to take place and cause a negative impact on people’s lives leaving many poor and homeless not being able to afford basic everyday needs to survive.

In conclusion, Fitzgerald was a phenomenal writer and should have gotten more credit for his work when he was alive due to it being so captivating while also having a good plot structure along with it. As a result of his work not getting enough positive feedback, he saw himself as being a failure leading him into his breaking point which consequently resulted in his death. Sadly, this wasn’t prevented and people were unappreciative until they realized that his novels were great pieces of work and had a unique plot to them making each novel different from one another. Each one of his works would give an intell of his life and what he was going through/experienced or what he had seen throughout the years which is what makes his work even more realistic. His friend Hemingway made a positive comment about the writer after his death stating, “His talent was as natural as the pattern that was made by the dust on a butterfly’s wings. At one time he understood it no more than the butterfly did and he did not know when it was brushed or marred. Later he became conscious of his damaged wings and of their construction and he learned to think and could not fly anymore because the love of flight was gone and he could only remember when it had been effortless.” 

01 February 2021

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