How do the last four paragraphs beginning with, "most of the big shore places were closed now", effectively connect theme to the novel?

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MaudlinStreet | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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Here, Nick prepares to return home. He takes one last look at Gatsby’s house and remembers Dutch sailors arriving in the New World. He connects the “green breast of the new world”  with Gatsby and concludes that like those first European arrivals to America, seeing Daisy's dock put Gatsby “face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate to his capacity for wonder.” For both the sailors and Gatsby, that was the last “transitory enchanted moment” when man “must have held his breath in the presence of this continent, compelled into an aesthetic contemplation he neither understood nor desired.” So Fitzgerald describes the American Dream.


Gatsby’s dream was actually behind him “somewhere back in that vast obscurity beyond the city, where the dark fields of the republic rolled on under the night.” The national dream, like Gatsby’s in all its idealism, asked too much. Yet his spirit never succumbed. Gatsby’s green light is both his yesterday and his tomorrow. It symbolizes the dream of his boyhood and the hope of fulfillment in the future. It represents the reckless, "success at any cost", pursuit of the entire American Dream. As Daisy blossoms for Gatsby, the new world had flowered for the Dutch settlers. Nick declares of the Dream, “It eluded us then, but that’s no matter—tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther.… And one fine morning.…”.

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