FAQ About The Great Gatsby

What is the role of social class in The Great Gatsby
one year ago | gizem

What is the role of social class in "The Great Gatsby"?

Social class is a major theme in "The Great Gatsby," and it shapes the relationships and interactions between the characters throughout the novel. The story takes place during the 1920s, a time of great wealth and prosperity, but also of stark social and economic inequality.

The main characters in the novel are divided into three social classes: old money, new money, and no money. Old money refers to the aristocratic families who have inherited their wealth and social status over generations, while new money refers to those who have recently acquired their wealth through business, investment, or illegal activities. Those who have no money, such as Nick Carraway, are caught in between these two worlds.

Social class affects the characters' lifestyles, attitudes, and behaviors, and is a source of tension and conflict in the novel. The old money elite, represented by characters such as Tom and Daisy Buchanan, are portrayed as shallow and corrupt, while the new money characters, such as Gatsby, are seen as vulgar and crass. The characters' social class also determines their access to power and privilege, and their ability to pursue their dreams and desires.

Furthermore, the novel suggests that social mobility is difficult if not impossible, and that the American Dream is an illusion. Gatsby's attempt to win back Daisy through his wealth and status is ultimately doomed to fail, as he is never fully accepted by the old money elite. This underscores the novel's critique of the social and economic inequality of the Jazz Age, and its warning against the excesses and moral decay of the American Dream.