Economics Thesis


Economics Thesis Example

(based on the novel The Great Gatsby)

Do you often recall memory from the past? Even many of us do, we do not stay in memory because we know that life must go on. It is no use blaming ourselves for the mistakes we have made. However, Jay Gatsby, the main character in The Great Gatsby, does not have the same opinion. He holds on straight to the end that the power of money is omnipotent to an extent that it can bring one back to the past. Jay Gatsby tries to immerse himself into auld lang syne with his English possessions, his Gothic house and his geographical location.

The English possessions Jay Gatsby bought act as a symbol to show his yearning for the past. Gatsby told Daisy that his clothes were bought from England. “I've got a man in England who buys me clothes. He sends over a selection of things at the beginning of each season, spring and fall” (92). Although he was living in America, he insisted to buy his clothes in England. According to the website of National Bureau of Economic Research, “With Britain weakened after the war, New York emerged as London's equal if not her superior in the contest to be the world's leading financial center” (Carlos Lozada). Before World War I, England was the center of the world economy. However, London's prominent role shrank after the war. America changed from debtor to creditor internationally while New York became the new center of the world's economy. The English possession is a symbol to represent Jay Gatsby's stubbornness to the past. The story of The Great Gatsby happened right after the World War I. Gatsby was proud of his English collection of antiques and clothes, which symbolize the mighty power of England used to possess. His insistence to the past is the reason why he had to buy clothes abroad in England but not in America.

Like his clothes from England, Jay Gatsby pretended to live as a nobleman in Middle Ages with his mansion. As the narrator Nick Carraway described, Jay Gatsby's house was built with “Big postern” and “arched door” (90), and it seemed like a “factual imitation of some Hotel de Ville in Normandy with a tower on one side” (5). When Daisy came to his house, “With enchanting murmurs Daisy admired this aspect or that of the feudal silhouette against the sky, admired the gardens, the sparkling odor of jonquils and the frothy odor of hawthorn and plum blossoms and the pale gold odor of kiss-me-at-the-gate” (90). From the website of Serdar Hizli Art, the characteristics of Gothic Architecture are also arches, tower and plants which was similar to the design of Jay Gatsby's house. Jay Gatsby always held banquet in his house. “I keep it always full of interesting people, night and day. People who do interesting things. Celebrated people” (90). Jay Gatsby kept his house with celebrity by holding party in his gothic mansion. The author uses Hors d'oeuvre, a French phrase to express the appetizer of the party (40). In middle ages, the nobleman or knight lived in castle. Their residences were an emblem of their social status and authority. Jay Gatsby made his life aristocratic in Europe by living in a gothic house and holding parties in his house. He told lie to the narrator that he lived in all the capitals of Europe and had leisure time to painting (65). Jay Gatsby was looking forward to a noble life he told his dream as a lie to Nick Carraway.

Before he built his mansion, he had to decide the geographical location. He chose West Egg instead of East Egg since he did not like the present. The narrator described the West and East Egg: “I lived at the West Egg, the - well, the less fashionable of the two, though this is most superficial tag to express the bizarre and not a little sinister contrast between them … Across the courtesy bay the white palaces of fashionable East Egg glittered along the water” (5). East Egg represented the cruel reality that Daisy had already married Tom Buchanans, and Jay Gatsby did not want to face. When Jay Gatsby went to East Egg, he realized and they had a daughter, “Afterward he kept looking at the child with surprise” (117). The word “fashionable” emphasized Jay Gatsby's desire to live in the past. He chose to live in West Egg because he did not like the “fashionable” East Egg. Although he knew Daisy was in East Egg, he did not go and look for her. Jay Gatsby wanted Daisy to stay in the memory with him too. They had had their joyful time before, and they could extend their happiness, but only in West Egg. There was no Tom and her daughter. He tried to escape from the reality represented by the fashionable East Egg that his lover had husband and daughter, and he was not the one in that family.

People sometimes care too much about what they have done wrong in the past, but they do not focus in the present and the future. Jay Gatsby's obstinacy was part of the reason why he was killed. Getting into a dead end is not a solution. If Jay Gatsby could step back and look at the bigger picture, he might realize that there were goals he could strive for opportunities awaiting him. When you are confronted by failure, would you choose to immerse into your past achievement or treat it as a lesson and start the journey again?

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