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Money and the American Dream

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Esther Li

on 21 January 2016

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Transcript of Money and the American Dream

Guiding Statement:
In , F. Scott Fitzgerald illustrates the surge of consumerism and decline of morals caused by the growing economy in the 1920s, which gave people a materialistic mentality towards the American Dream, corrupting its core values.

Unequal Distribution of Wealth and Superficial Prosperity
of wealth
Top 0.1%'s wealth = bottom 42 %'s wealth
worker productivity increased 32% but wages increased only 8%
Tax cuts for the wealthy
: self-indulgence
Associated material wealth with the American Dream
Believed that wealth is a measurement of success and happiness
Often acquired wealth by unlawful ways
Monday, September 18, 1929
Vol XXI, No. 311
United States Becomes the Richest Nation in the World
Decline of morals
Justified overspending with new financial mentality
Mass production and availability of credit prompted a “get rich” attitude
Main goal=becoming rich
Values of western culture became obsolete

Agricultural production increased greatly during WWI
U.S. faced foreign competition
Large surplus
--> farm products' prices fell -->farmers in debt, unable to pay their loans --> banks failed
Installment plan
Americans bought more than they could afford, which created a
consumer economy
Over half of nation's automobiles sold on credit
Consumer debt doubled
Overbuying on credit --> less production, more worker layoffs

“Up-stairs in the solemn echoing drive she let four taxicabs drive away before she selected a new one, lavender-colored with gray upholstery” (Fitzgerald 27).
"The only
I was was when I married him... He borrowed somebody's best suit to get married in, and never even told me about it" (Fitzgerald 35).
Literary Analysis #2
Literary Analysis #3
It became something that people were willing to work for, save for, strive for
"Why Business Prosperity Came"
by Stuart Chase

industry stimulated economy

Road & building construction
Provided the country with a
visible appearance
of prosperity

It became something that people were willing to work for, save for, strive for.
Money and the American Dream
By Maggie Huang, Esther Li, and Karen Sohn
The Great Gatsby
Source: www.abc-clio.com
“The only car visible was the
dust-covered wreck
of a Ford which crouched in a
corner. It had occurred to me that this
of a garage must be a blind, and that sumptuous and romantic apartments were concealed overhead" (Fitzgerald 25).
Source: www.digitalhistory.uh.edu
Source: www.abc-clio.com
Connections to The Great Gatsby
Literary Analysis #1
Thank you!

Source: http://ic.galegroup.com/ic/uhic/ReferenceDetailsPage/ReferenceDetailsWindow?displayGroupName=Reference&zid=6d3bef0712b41d824dc3a746da70ef24&action=2&documentId=GALE%7CCX3425600011&userGroupName=mlin_c_montytech&jsid=c9674adb2ee4f7742f7c0575588b0c0d

Source : http://ic.galegroup.com/ic/uhic/ReferenceDetailsPage/ReferenceDetailsWindow?displayGroupName=Reference&zid=6d3bef0712b41d824dc3a746da70ef24&action=2&documentId=GALE%7CCX3425600011&userGroupName=mlin_c_montytech&jsid=c9674adb2ee4f7742f7c0575588b0c0d
Work Cited
Mintz, Steven, and Sara McNeil. "Why It Happened..." Digital History. College of Education, 2014. Web.
10 Jan. 2016.
Gross, Dalton, and MaryJean Gross. "Literature Connections: The Great Gatsby and the Roaring
Twenties: The Loss of the American Dream." American History. ABC-CLIO, 2016. Web. 10 Jan. 2016.
"Causes of the Great Depression." Great Depression and the New Deal Reference Library. Ed.
Allison McNeill, Richard C. Hanes, and Sharon M. Hanes. Vol. 1: Almanac. Detroit: UXL, 2003. 1-20. U.S. History in Context. Web. 9 Jan. 2016.
"Age of Prosperity." Becoming Modern: America in the 1920s. America in Class, 2012. Web. 17 Jan.

“‘Her voice is
full of money
,’ he said suddenly. That was it. I’d never understood before. It was full of money—that was the
inexhaustible charm
that rose and fell in it” (Fitzgerald 120).
Full transcript