Humans naturally experience an array of colorful and powerful emotions but what happens when your fixated on finding love? Both the Great Gatsby and The Love Song of TJ Prufrock convey the shared theme that the fixation om love can make people disengage with reality as they believe love is the ultimate key to happiness.
The overall plot of Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” based upon one Jay Gatbsy who’s single goal in life is to achieve unconditional reciprocated love with Daisy Buchanan. His obsession with rekindling his love with Daisy gets to a point that completely clouded his judgment and rationality. This would strike anyone has a problem right away because it’s ultimately toxic to place your happiness in others. Jay Gatsby goes through his life doing everything for a girl who is already in a committed relationship.
In the book it states “ Daisy tumbles short of [Gatsby’s] dreams… because of the colossal vitality of his illusion”(95). Gatsby’s love restricts his perception of what’s real and their love in his eyes is tainted. Gatsby continuously acts on his emotions and sees Daisy almost like an object; tangible that he will stop at nothing to attain. If you take away Daisy, Gatsby’s life has no meaning, no substance, just the never ending pursuit of a girl. It’s also said “ Gatsby believed in the greenlight, the orgastic future that year-by-year recedes before us”(180). This shows how limitless emotions can be and how they can take over and have a life of their own.
In the Love Song of TJ Prufrock he just like Gatsby experiences a sense of certain disillusionment thinking he will ultimately reach his goal of happiness if he finds love this confuses him with from reality. Like Gatsby, Prufrock thinks love will lead him to happiness yet he’s crippled by fear. He repeatedly says “there will be time” which shows procrastination, waiting for happiness to find him rather than embracing life’s opportunities and pursuing happiness himself. Prufrock is suffocated by fear of and stress mostly about how he is perceived and how he will never be in a successful relationship. In a crucial line he says “ I should’ve been a pair of ragged claws.” He’s ultimately rejecting responsibility for the unhappiness he feels in his life and explain how worthless he feels saying he would be better as an animal like a crab. This fear restricts Prufrock from doing anything meaningful in his life. Having this constant negative mentality he fogs his judgment by constantly convincing himself he’s unworthy. Prufrockks fixation on love and society and his place regarding. both disables him as he wrongfully pre determines his fate.
Gatsby and Prufrock are similar in their hopeless idea on what will lead them to happiness. Gatsby’s obsessive love for daisy and devoting his life to her ruins the simplicity of enjoying everything in between. While Prufrock equally let’s his distorted view get the best of him and renders his present life meaning less as he thinks of himself as a disease to society. The corruption of Prufrock’s and Gatsby’s idea of what will make them happy (love) ends up making them live up to the fear of being a failure in society.