In The Great Gatsby, what led to the downfall of Gatsby's dream?

Expert Answers info

D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2016

write9,180 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Social Sciences

Reality itself leads to the downfall of Gatsby's dream. What he dreamed of was ultimately unattainable.

Gatsby's dream was not merely to reunite with Daisy. He wanted to erase the last five years and go back to the moment in 1917 when they were in love with each other. He wanted to start over as if nothing had happened in the meantime.

However, as Nick tries to explain to him, that's not possible. There is no going back. Too much has happened in between. Daisy has married and had a child. She's built a life separate from Gatsby. Gatsby may refuse to hear this, but it is nevertheless true.

In the end, one person can't be forced...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 653 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now


check Approved by eNotes Editorial

lschertz eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2012

write39 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Science, and Social Sciences

check Approved by eNotes Editorial


tikclocktok | Student

Gatsby’s dream was to win Daisy but was corrupted by money and dishonesty just as the American dream of happiness and individualism has disintegrated into the mere pursuit of wealth. Though Gatsby’s power to transform his dreams into reality is what makes him “great,” Nick reflects that the era of dreaming—both Gatsby’s dream and the American dream—is over.

check Approved by eNotes Editorial