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I need a thesis for comparing Hamlet, The Great Gatsby, and Brave New World. It either...

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pinkiey | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 14, 2012 at 5:34 AM via web

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I need a thesis for comparing Hamlet, The Great Gatsby, and Brave New World. It either has to be the loss and regaining of identity or isolation.

I really just need a place to start. Right now I thought I was going to write about how their quest for identity leads to isolation and ultimately death, but I don't think that works.

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susan3smith | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted January 14, 2012 at 6:46 AM (Answer #1)

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Synthesizing the ideas of these three works is somewhat challenging indeed.  But perhaps I can give you a few ideas.  Each of these works has a protagonist that feels alienated from his society.  The causes and effects of this alienation, or isolation, are different for each protagonist.  Hamlet is alienated because he alone is grieving for the death of his family and because he has been designated to avenge his father's death.  Hamlet's keen feelings of loss and his mission to kill the present king of Denmark make him an outsider to his own family, the Danish court, and his countrymen.  Jay Gatsby's mission to regain Daisy, in a sense, isolates him.  He is wealthy beyond measure and is able to throw extravagant parties, yet Gatsby stands aloof from others, wanting only to possess Daisy.  And, for Brave New World, I might focus on John the Savage rather than Bernard.  In his new environment, John the Savage seeks more than it can or will provide--love, emotion, art.  Each protagonist is searching for meaning, and it seems that this search is what isolates him, for the meaning that each seeks is not found in the society in which he lives.

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pinkiey | Student , Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted January 15, 2012 at 6:10 AM (Answer #2)

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Thank you very much, that helps sort out some ideas I have previously had. And yes for New World I have to use John Savage anyways! If you have anymore tips, let me know ! :)

 

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mhennawi | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted January 16, 2012 at 1:53 AM (Answer #3)

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Bernard, The Great Gatsby and Hamlet all suffer the pain of being different. Gatsby's contrived and modelled existence is pointed towards the direction of his obsession with Daisy. He has created a past and and a present for himself in an effort to carve out a social niche. However, he is unable to partake in this pseudo life he has created for he knows that it is not real, so he stands aloof and alone. Similarly, Hamlet is unable to take up his natural role since he is consumed with grief which is an obsession for him. He opts out of life and lives in the prison of a self imposed melancholy. Both Gatsby and Hamlet fall victim to the tragedy of fate. On the other hand, Bernard is a hypocritical character who is different by nature. We are told that his beginnings were the result of miss mix of chemicals. Bernard lives on the edge of the civilised and uncivilised world but is clever enough to be able to benefit from both. His isolation is not self imposed, it is imposed by the authority of the civilised world.   

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