论《了不起的盖茨比》中主人公盖茨比的性格特征 A Critical Analysis of Gatsbys Characterization in The Great Gatsby文献综述

 2021-09-27 12:09


1. Introduction1.1 Research background F. Scott Fitzgerald (18961940) is an American author of novels and short stories and has been widely acclaimed as one of the twentieth centurys greatest writers. For Fitzgerald, who lived in the midst of the roaring twenties and was part of it alldriving fast cars, drinking hard whisky, and taking a vast delight in it, American was, he was so cognitive to realize, a moon that never rose. As much as he appreciated the bustling of the postwar period, he predicted its gloom andsag. So most of his work centering on the social problems and phenomena of the 20th century have been regarded as important materials for the generation to rethink profoundly of the hidden spiritual crisis and the disillusion of American Dream. Fitzgerald is a prominent spokesman of the Jazz Age, which in the words of Malcolm Cowley, is not so much a historical period as a legend of glitter, of recklessness, and of talent in such profusion that it is sown broadcast like wild oats. In the period, the nations senses have changed a lot. Many Americans care more about enjoying life without limits and doing everything they want. There is unparalleled flourish before pain is full of American society. Fitzgeralds novels and short stories record the excesses of the age, but more than that, representing the truth hidden the surface.Whats more important, he along with Ernest Hemingway is one outstanding representative of the Lost Generation. He dares to seek the meaning of life while reject the values of American materialism in the postwar years. The Great Gatsby, as Fitzgeralds masterpiece, embodies the disillusionment of the American Dream. The entire story happens in one summer in 1922. Gatsby is a poor youth from the Midwest. He falls in love with Daisy, a wealthy girl, but is too poor to marry her. The girl is then married to a rich young man, Tom Buchanan. Determined to win his lost love back, Gatsby engages himself in bootlegging and other shady activities, thus earning enough money to buy a magnificent imitation French villa. There he spreads dazzling parties every weekend in the hope of alluring the Buchanan to come. They finally come and Gatsby meets his dreams. A sense of loss and disillusionment comes over him. Then Daisy kills a woman in an accident, and plots with Tom to shift the blame on Gatsby. So Gatsby is shot and the Buchanan escape.1.2 Need for the study Theoretically speaking, Gatsbys life keeps to a distinct schema:there is, at first, a dream, then a disillusion, and finally a sense of despair. In a manner, Gatsbys personal experience closes to the whole of the American experience up to the first few decades of the twentieth century. Just as Fitzgerald understood, though there was the roaring of the postwar boom years, the twenties ended with a huge drop in stock market prices that began the Great Depression. Gatsbys tragedy was so as to the failure of the American Dream. This study is mean to analyze Gatsbys tragic characters in the view of the American Dream and a series of details of the novel. Last but not least, readers can have a comprehensive understanding of the Great Gatsby and the literary achievements Fitzgerald has made.2. Literature review2.1Previous studies on the American Dream in the Great GatsbySarah Churchwell sees the Great Gatsby as a cautionary tale of the decadent downside of the American dream. From Gatsbys pursuit of money to unrealistic love, he finally was shot as a scapegoat; the story reveals the thorough disillusion of the American Dream.The American Dream originates from the Declaration of Independence, which states that all men are created equal with the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Then Historian James Truslow Adam expounded the expression American Dream in his book Epic of America, life should be better and richer and fuller for every man, with opportunity for each according to his ability or achievement. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain. And later he wrote, it has been a dream of being able to grow to fullest development as man and woman, unhampered by the barriers which had slowly been erected in the order civilizations, unrepressed by social orders which had developed for the benefit of classes rather than for the simple human being of any and every class.Zeng Aiqiong, one teacher in the Third Middle School of Jurong City, makes a comprehensive analysis of the American Dream from the point of mentality and material. On one hand, the ideal American Dream, which is the basic of American Dream, makes citizen full of wonderful hope and longing. Gatsbys crazy pursuit of Daisy symbolizes Americans urgent aspiration for happiness, especially success (including satisfied career, perfect love, vast wealth and sovereign position. At that time, Gatsby accompanying his deep love for Daisy joined the army in the World War I and sublimate his values. It seems to tell us that one without illustrious pedigree can get gain both fame and wealth if he endures hardships with diligence. On the other hand, the material American Dream leads Gatsby to the final disillusionment. Gatsby held countless parties to attract Daisys attention with filthy lucre. However the music, the laughter and the faces in the parties, all blurred as one confused mass, signified the purposelessness and loneliness of the party-goers beneath their masks of relaxation and joviality. Similarly Gatsby lost he during the pursuit, even was shoot as a scapegoat, which implied the failure of the American Dream.Wang Weiqin (2013), another researcher, agrees on the classification and emphasizes that the American Dream stems from the identical improvement in material and mentality. Gatsbys tragedy results from the imbalance between wealth and spirit. Until he was dead, he was innocent enough to believe the past can be recovered and that Daisy was worth cherishing. However in the view of Xia Guhua (2013), Gatsbys American Dream has been distorted since he finished being a soldier. He became tragically convinced of the power of money. He tried his utmost to earn money in the cost of ignoring the law and committing a crime. Then he bought a villa, making himself a neighbor of Daisy and held extravagant parties to win Daisy. Unconsciously he wanted to realize own spiritual desire by material wealth. Contrast with the traditional American dream, in that era which underlines opportunity, equality, belief and success, Gatsby was doomed to get lost.2.2 Previous studies on the main characters in the Great Gatsby A few investigators have great interest in the analysis of characters, especially the hero Gatsby. According to Sunyan (2014), Gatsbys character is purified by a deep, unselfish love for Daisy, a good-looking, silly woman who, earlier, married a rich husband instead of Gatsby and moved into high society. He has never lost his love for Daisy and in the end he is still willing to shield her from disgrace. His persistence in love gives readers a deep impression. When Gatsby has a reunion with Daisy, he behaves nervously just like an inexperienced child. Besides none of Gatsby s upper class friends come up in his funeral, which indicates the relationship on the basis of money is so hypocritical.Works CitedBruccoli, Matthew, J. A New Critical Analysis to The Great Gatsby. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008. Barthes, Roland. Image, Music, Text, New York: Hill and Wang, 1977.Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: IvyBooks, 1999.Gao, Hui. [高慧], 《了不起的盖茨比》中的美国梦.红河学院学报,2010,(3): 54-56.Li, Mingxin. [李明心],《了不起的盖茨比》中美国梦的解读.徐州教育学院学报,2008,(4): 73-75.Sun, Yan. [孙艳], 《了不起的盖茨比》的人物形象解读.三峡大学学报(人文社会科学版), 2007,(5): 105-107.Xia, Guhua. [夏古华],传统与现实的时空位移-《了不起的盖茨比》主人公盖茨比悲剧心理解析.西南师范大学学报,2009,(2):116-118.Wang, Lihong. [王立宏],《了不起的盖茨比》中盖茨比的人生悲剧.长春大学学报,2006,(6): 67-69.Wang, Weiqin. [王伟芹],《了不起的盖茨比》中美国梦的分析.当代文学,2010, (9): 121-123.Zeng, Aiqong. [曾爱琼],《了不起的盖茨比》美国梦幻灭的写照.鸡西大学学报, 2011, (3): 43-45.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Gatsbyhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F._Scott_Fitzgeraldhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Dream#20th_century