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Power, Prose, and PurseLaw, Literature, and Economic Transformations$
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Alison LaCroix, Saul Levmore, and Martha C. Nussbaum

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190873455

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190873455.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 16 October 2019

Jay Gatsby, Justice Douglas, and the Significance of Class in American Society

Jay Gatsby, Justice Douglas, and the Significance of Class in American Society

Chapter:
5 Jay Gatsby, Justice Douglas, and the Significance of Class in American Society
Source:
Power, Prose, and Purse
Author(s):

Justin Driver

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190873455.003.0006

This chapter juxtaposes the tales of two ambitious men, both born in the American West, who moved east to New York in an effort to make names for themselves during the 1920s. The ambitions of Jay Gatsby—as recounted in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby—and William O. Douglas—as recounted in his autobiography, Go East, Young Man—led the two men in very different directions. Where Gatsby turned to lawlessness, Douglas instead turned to law. The distinct journeys and distinct fates that Gatsby and Douglas experience yield insight into the significance of class within the United States, and also offer significant complications of the American Dream.

Keywords:   Justice William O. Douglas, The Great Gatsby, the American Dream, class, economic mobility, wealth

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