Did You Read 'The Great Gatsby' Wrong?

Did You Read 'The Great Gatsby' Wrong?

The not-so-Great Gatsby.
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If you read The Great Gatsby as a love story, you're reading it wrong. Well, kind of.

You see, F. Scott Fitzgerald's most popular work is not the beautiful tragedy that "Romeo and Juliet" is or the feel-good romance of "High School Musical". No, The Great Gatsby is the depressing story that tells us love is hopeless, a waste of time. A man dedicates his whole life to one love and it gives him nothing but an extra hole in his head.

If you read this story as a love story, you're going to have a bad time because it's the antithesis of the traditional love story. The boy meets the girl, the boy loses the girl, and the boy never gets the girl despite all he tries.

Gatsby lost Daisy at a young age and found her only after she was married. He's dedicated his life to earning money and fame solely to win her back. He stares at the green light every single night, dreaming of love lost.

When Nick tells Gatsby "You can't repeat the past," he's not telling a lie. In fact, the whole novel revolves around this one point. While Nick is going on in life, making a name for himself for himself, Gatsby is making a name for himself solely so he can impress Daisy. Gatsby is nothing without her, nothing on his own, and he cannot get her back. Despite all his money and power, he is utterly worthless and he knows it, especially at the end.

Gatsby shows us that grand gestures don't mean anything, it tells us true love may not work out, and it shows us the tragedy of dedicating your life to a person, all feelings Fitzgerald was feeling at the time he wrote the novel.

You see, in the summer of 1924, Fitzgerald's marriage seemed to be falling apart. His wife, Zelda, had become intimately involved with a man she met when she and Fitzgerald moved to Paris. Fitzgerald had often neglected his love life in support of his dreams, his novels, but he often tried to repair the couple's relationship with grandiose gestures (like moving to Paris) but these rarely worked for long. When Fitzgerald wrote this novel, he drew from the feelings of betrayal, the sadness and despair he felt towards his and Zelda's marriage at the time. And Fitzgerald, often thinking terribly highly of himself, likely did not think he was to blame. He felt like Gatsby and wrote the novel in accordance.

So many people read The Great Gatsby without realizing the intentional irony in the title. To think Gatsby is great is to fail to understand the entire theme of the novel. The tragedy is to warn others about the hopelessness of being hopelessly in love. Fitzgerald never wanted anyone to read this as the traditional love story and he definitely did not want people to idolize Gatsby the way that they do. Gatsby is not a king, he's a fool, and that's the entire point. Gatsby has done so much to try to win this girl back and, at the end of the day, he can't. He's dedicated his whole life to her and it means nothing in the end. To read The Great Gatsby as a love story is to miss the point entirely.

Cover Image Credit: Claran Roarty

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37 Drake Lyrics From 'Scorpion' That Will Make Your Next Instagram Caption Go Double Platinum

Side A makes you want to be single, Side B make you want to be boo'd up.

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1. "Don't tell me how knew it would be like this all along" — Emotionless

Definitely a "I'm too good" for you vibe.

2. "My mentions are jokes, but they never give me the facts" — Talk Up

This one's for my haters.

3. "I wanna thank God for workin' way harder than Satan" — Elevate

For when you're feeling blessed.

4. "I promise if I'm not dead then I'm dedicated" — March 14

In Drake's story about his son the world knows about now, we get a lyric of true love and dedication

5. "My Mount Rushmore is me with four different expressions" — Survival

6. "Pinky ring 'til I get a wedding ring" — Nonstop

7. "I gotta breathe in real deep when I catch an attitude" — 8 Out of 10

This first line of the song is about to be spread on the gram like a wildfire

8. "Heard all of the talkin', now it's quiet, now it's shush" — Mob Ties

9. "California girls sweeter than pieces of candy" — Sandra's Rose

This is gonna have every girl who has ever stayed in Cali all hot and heavy, watch it.

10. "I think you're changing your mind, starting to see it in your eyes" — Summer Games

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11. "Look the new me is really still the real me" — In My Feelings

When you've got to profess that you've changed 200%

12. "Only beggin' that I do is me beggin' your pardon" — Is There More

13. "Shifted your focus, lens lookin' jaded" — Jaded

14. "Back and forth to Italy, my comment section killin' me" — Can't Take a Joke

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15. "People are only as tough as they phone allows them to be" — Peak

Y'all can't have this one, I'm stealing it

16. "Work all winter, shine all summer" — That's How You Feel

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17. "Blue faces, I got blue diamonds, blue tint, yeah" — Blue Tint


18. "I stay busy workin' on me" — Elevate

19. "Ten of us, we movin' as one" — Talk Up

The perfect reason to get the largest group picture you've had on your gram

20. "October baby for irony sake, of course" — March 14

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21. "She had an attitude in the summer but now she nice again" — Blue Tint

22. "I know you special girl 'cause I know too many" — In My Feelings


23. "Gotta hit the club like you hit them, hit them, hit them angles" — Nice for What

24. "She said 'Do you love me?' I tell her, 'Only partly,' I only love my ____ and my ____ I'm sorry" — God's Plan

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31. "I stopped askin' myself and I started feelin' myself" — Survival

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32. "They keep tryna' get me for my soul" — I'm Upset

33. "I'm tryna see who's there on the other end of the shade" — Emotionless

34. "Only obligation is to tell it straight" — Elevate

35. "It don't matter to me what you say" — Don't Matter to Me


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36. "I'm the chosen one, flowers never pick themselves" — Sandra's Rose

37. "Say you'll never ever leave from beside me" — In My Feelings

Couple goals, amirite?

Cover Image Credit:

@champagnepapi / Instagram

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8 Reasons Why The rebooted "queer eye" was so Fabulous

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