AMBITION IN SCOTT FITZGERALD'S THE GREAT GATSBY
AND WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE'S MACBETH
In the walk of life, ambition is the path to success; and persistence, the substance of ignition required to propel it. When harnessed with unmitigated precision, ambition is a force which can alone endow one with the jewels of life. However, if overmastered by ambition, it is not but a sign of doom and destruction, resulting ultimately in one's premature demise. In Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby and William Shakespeare's Macbeth, many similarities and differences may be exhibited in the characters of the respective protagonists - Gatsby and Macbeth - through the recurring theme of ambition. Three pivotal facets found in both works of literature are - firstly - of the immense influence of a woman upon the decisions of each protagonist, the underlying insecurity and vulnerability of character of the two men, and the presence of towering ambition in both characters.
The collusion of these three continuing themes impels the protagonists of the respective works to perilous heights, resulting eventually, in their inevitable demise.
One point of commonness found in both works is the manner in which the lives of Gatsby and Macbeth are constantly toyed with - in one way or another - by a woman. In The Great Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan - Gatsby's eternal love - becomes the sole motivation for Gatsby to live. Upon being rejected by her during his youth, he scrupulously reinvents himself as a cultured millionaire of high society in an attempt to court Daisy's approval. However, despite attaining an immense fortune, he fails to mould with the old aristocratic nobilities of America, thereby being rejected by Daisy yet again. His judgment, hindered by his love for Daisy, fails to indicate to him that Daisy is in fact a low...