Is the Midwest still as wholesome a place as presented in The Great Gatsby?

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troutmiller eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Fitzgerald "romanticizes" the Midwest in this novel.  His two main characters come from the Midwest.  They represent the somewhat innocent, the type who are not sophisticated, and they are fair people. Jay comes from the Midwest, and he is the hero who comes to a tragic end.  He works to make the money he needs to win Daisy back.  He thought all along that if he could get enough money, he could win her back.  Fitzgerald shows us how he is generous and harmless to others, despite his "illegal doings." Once Gatsby is dead, there is nowhere for Nick to go.  He is sickened by the actions and personalities of the East Egg people, and he has no choice but to return to the Midwest.  All through the book Nick was the voice of reason and the one who "judged" others' actions.  We saw these things happen through his Midwestern eyes.

If your question is asking if it's still that way today, I would say yes. The price of living, the corruption and the violence still occurs more often in the larger (Eastern) cities.  We have our crime here in the Midwest, but his novel is still evident in our lives and lifestyles today. Hopefully, though, we've learned from our mistakes and it won't ever get out of control to that extent again. (crash of 29)

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The Great Gatsby

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