Comparing Money In The Great Gatsby And The Spoils Of

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Money is an essential need for people to survive along with food, shelter, and water. People try to accumulate much wealth in order to live a luxurious life. Money is thought to buy happiness through its ability to acquire whatever ones heart desires. Accumulating much wealth for some people can bring on anxiety, isolation, greed, horror, and many other unpleasant side effects. The power of money and its negative side effects are told by both F. Scott Fitzgerald in The Great Gatsby and Henry James in The Spoils of Poynton. The characters in both stories are fixated on what money can buy. Their values and morals are tainted by their motivation to accumulate much wealth. With this money the obsession of buying and showing off their luxury…show more content…
Throughout the novel the characters are described through their location, occupation, salary, possessions, cars, and other luxuries. Social status determines whether or not one is invited to the parties of the year and if one may associate with certain powerful people. In chapter four of Fitzgerald’s novel Gatsby drives through the valley of ashes with Nick, the narrator, in Gatsby’s Rolls Royce. They drive away in hopes for Gatsby to reunite with Daisy, his one true love. While on the road Nick says, “A dead man passed us in a hearse heaped with blooms, followed by two carriages with drawn blinds, and by more cheerful carriages for friends. The friends looked out at us with the tragic eyes and short upper lips of southeastern Europe, and I was glad that the sight of Gatsby’s splendid car was included in their somber holiday” (Ch. 4). Throughout the novel automobiles are mentioned and symbolize the American dream followed by social status. In this passage there is a distinct reference to a hearse and limousine, symbolizing death and wealth. Nick feels that the stair off between the ‘three modish negroes’ and Gatsby has to do with each other’s social status, which is articulated in car ownership. This car scene draws a line between death and wealth foreshadowing a horrible accident at the end of the novel, which involves cars. In chapter seven, the spectacular Rolls Royce that Gatsby drives becomes known as the ‘death car’. Leading up to the horrible car accident, Myrtle’s death, Tom drives Gatsby’s car to New, York guiding Myrtle to reference the car with him and Jordan as the passenger. Gatsby and Daisy take the car back, but on the drive home they get into a car crash that kills Myrtle. Gatsby explaining the crash says, “This woman rushed out at us just as we were passing a car coming the other way. It all happened in

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