I read an article from NY Times by Lucinda Rosenfeld in class a few days ago regarding ideas of social status in America today. The thing I despise about the idea of social status is the divisions it causes in our world. We have seen down in history how social statuses were shaped by discrimination, gender, wealth, and lots of other factors. This leads to millions of people being unable to live prosperously and richly compared to others above them. Reading this article by Rosenfeld made me realize that even though these people of low statuses are hindered by their placement in society, they still have the potential to grow and work their way up the ladder. Society is like the average workplace: you start as at the bottom as a common worker and then rise in the ranks through promotions. Everyone has the chance to raise themselves in society, but it all depends on the work they give that takes them there.
When I read this article in class, I already finished reading the classical novel The Great Gatsby. One of the characters, Jay Gatsby, apparently started off poor and in the lower classes of society while the love of his life was of a higher class compared to him. When he was shipped off to fight in WWI, his love decided to marry a richer man that could give her the wealth that her current class could not give her. When Gatsby returned home, poor and homeless, he was disappointed to learn how he lost his lover, but he aspired to rise up in the ranks of society and grow richer to win her back. We can clearly see when we read the book that Gatsby’s hard work and aspirations to win back his lover helped him in succeeding in his goal in rising up in society’s ranks.