A Cause Analysis of the Tragedy of Daisy in The Great Gatsby毕业论文_英语毕业论文

A Cause Analysis of the Tragedy of Daisy in The Great Gatsby毕业论文

2021-04-07更新

摘 要

弗朗西斯·司科特·菲茨杰拉德是二十世纪美国最杰出的作家之一。菲茨杰拉德擅长于叙述故事,并且他被推崇为“爵士时代”的代言人。他作品的恒久主题是美国梦以及它的破灭。1925年《了不起的盖茨比》问世,奠定了他在现代美国文学史上的地位。本论文旨在从女性主义的角度剖析《了不起的盖茨比》中女主人公黛西的悲剧形象,并从个人、家庭、男性和社会这四个方面分析她悲剧的形成原因,揭示她受害者的身份。

关键词:弗朗西斯·司科特·菲茨杰拉德;《了不起的盖茨比》;黛西;悲剧

Contents

1. Introduction———————————————————————————-1

2. Demonstration——————————————————————————-3

2.1 Personal causes leading to Daisy’s tragedy——————————————–3

2.1.1 Daisy’s moral decadence—————————————————————3

2.1.1.1 Daisy’s hypocrisy and dishonesty————————————————–3

2.1.1.2 Daisy’s irresponsibility and selfishness——————————————–4

2.1.2 Daisy’s artificial innocence————————————————————5

2.1.2.1Daisy’s ruthless pursuit of money—————————————————5

2.1.2.2Daisy’s hollowness and snobbery—————————————————5

2.2 Family influences contributing to Daisy’s tragedy———————————–6

2.2.1 Daisy’s family affecting her concept of social classes—————————–7

2.2.2 Daisy’s family affecting her personality———————————————7

2.3 Influences of males in Daisy’s life——————————————————9

2.3.1 Gatsby’s idealization and materialization of Daisy——————————–9

2.3.2 Tom’s irresponsibility and disloyalty to Daisy————————————10

2.4 Social environment contributing to Daisy’s tragedy——————————–11

2.4.1 The patriarchal society—————————————————————-11

2.4.1.1 Male’s oppression and domination of female———————————–11

2.4.1.2 Male’s materialization of female and disrespect to female——————–11

2.4.2 The jazz age—————————————————————————-12

2.4.2.1 The prevalence of consumerism and hedonism in the jazz age—————12

2.4.2.2 The wrong interpretation of American Dream in the jazz age—————-13

3. Conclusion———————————————————————————14

Works Cited————————————————————————————-15

Bibliography————————————————————————————-16

A Cause Analysis of the Tragedy of Daisy in The Great Gatsby

1. Introduction

Francis Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940), one of the most famous American novelists in the 1920s, is known as the spokesman of the Jazz Age. Fitzgerald was born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1896 and he grew up in environments that changed him a lot. When he was young, he tried to write scripts. After finishing high school, he was admitted to Princeton University. At school he created a troupe, and wrote for the campus literature magazine. Afterwards, he dropped out because of his poor health. He enlisted in the armed forces in 1917 and was engaged in military training all day long. However, he did not have the chance to fight abroad. After the military experience, he was still insisting on his writing career. Fitzgerald’s individual life experiences provide rich sources for his literary creation, and make his understanding of American life more objective, true and profound than other contemporary writers. He always analyzes his American Dream through criticism and irony from an objective aspect. In 1920, he published the novel This Side of Paradise. The novel is his maiden work and it is an autobiographical novel recording Fitzgerald’s life experiences. When it was first published in 1920, it was immediately praised by readers and critics. And it eventually became a landmark work. After he married Zelda, they lived in Paris and he met many American writers such as Sherwood Anderson and Ernest Hemingway. The Great Gatsby was published in 1925, and it established his position in the history of modern American literature. And he became the spokesman of the Jazz Age. Fitzgerald continued his writing career after becoming famous, but his wife was lapped in luxury after marriage and she got mental disorders. These all brought him great pain. He cannot make ends meet and even went to Hollywood to write scripts to earn a living. In 1936, he got a lung disease and his wife was seriously ill as well. All these made him almost impossible to write and he was on the verge of a mental breakdown and got drunk all day long. He died of heart disease at the age of 44 in Los Angeles in 1940.

Most meaningful comments about Fitzgerald were usually written from 1950s after his death. With the recognition of Fitzgerald’s works from the public, his fame began to spread. Afterwards, his tales and fictions have been reinterpreted in United States and spread all over the world. His success lies in the fact that he has combined his life experiences with the American society. The novel The Great Gatsby is a typical example. The Great Gatsby was published in 1925 and it is regarded as the representative works of Fitzgerald. It is considered as the second best among the one hundred best English novels in the 20th century. T. S. Eliot once spoke highly of the novel and acclaimed it as “the first step that American fiction has taken since Henry James.” (Scott 268)

The Great Gatsby tells a love story taking place in New York in one summer in the 1920s. The novel makes the protagonist Gatsby’s pursuit of his American Dream and the disillusionment of his dream as the storyline. Fitzgerald emphasizes the disillusionment of the American Dream as the theme of the novel. This novel is written from the perspective of Nick who is the cousin of the heroine Daisy. Gatsby is a young man from the lower class and he wants to get rid of his identity of the poor since his childhood. Many years later, Gatsby owns a lot of wealth, industries and reputation by smuggling of wine. When he thinks that he is in the upper class, he decides to recapture his love Daisy to realize his American Dream. However, he doesn’t gain Daisy’s love actually and he is shot dead at last. The novel portrays almost all social spectra of American society at that time vividly. The story describes the modes of life and inner world of young Americans in the jazz age.

Daisy is the heroine of the novel and her life is a tragedy. About the image of Daisy, most literary critics hold negative attitudes towards her, and they regard her as a ruthless, selfish and snobbish girl. She is the reason of the disillusionment of Gatsby’s American Dream and his tragic life. As time goes on, a large number of literary critics reread the novel from the perspective of feminist criticism since 1960s. Literary critics find out that the image of Daisy is complex and hard to define. After thoroughly exploring the relationship between Daisy and Gatsby, it is discovered that actually Daisy is also a victim in the novel The Great Gatsby.

The Great Gatsby is considered as a classic novel in American literature. Critics generally regard it as a fiction of reflecting the American social reality in the 1920s. Many researches on this novel focus on its themes. Among them, the theme of the American Dream is by far the most analyzed one. The American Dream, as an eternal theme in American literature, runs throughout the whole novel. With the development of feminism, more attention is paid to female characters in this novel. For instance, the female character of Daisy has drawn people’s attention.

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