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The Great Gatsby
Transcript of The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby
Point Of View
The Great Gatsby
takes place in New York during the 1920s. The novel centers around different locations, the Valley of Ashes and two areas known as the East and West egg. Both areas are known for their great wealth however, the East egg area is more known to having inhabitants that belong under the old money category, families that always have had money. On the other hand, the inhabitants from West egg are more well known for being relatively new to wealth. The Valley of Ashes is presented as a desolate wasteland created by dumping of ashes.
Significance of Setting
"Gatsby turned out alright in the end; it was what preyed on Gatsby, what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elations of men."
"I hope she'll be a fool - that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool."
The novel takes place in during after prohibition and after World War I. This is significant because during prohibition many people would bootleg and sell alcohol illegally. This is how Gatsby is able to become wealthy. The different settings of the novel also have a direct connection to the behavior and consciousness of many of the characters. The characters that live in the East egg of Long Island seemed to be more greedy and spiteful and live without morals. The people from West egg seem to live a more noble life with the use of morals rather than money. The valley of ashes holds desperate characters looking for anyways necessary to escape their hopeless life and poverty-stricken life.
"You can't repeat the past."
Can't repeat the past? Why of course you can. I'm going to fix everything just the way it was before."
Throughout the entirety of the novel,
The Great Gatsby
is told in first person point of view. The novel is told through and narrated by Nick . However, since Nick is not the center of the main storyline, he can be viewed as a peripheral narrator. Nick makes for a great narrator is because of his ability to not hold judgment. This is significant because it allows the novel to feel like it is being told in third person since Nick is also able to interpret and tell the stories of many characters in the novel, without any bias or judgement.
Sentence Structure/ Phrasing :
Fitzgerald employs long sentence structures with a lot of punctuation marks, like commas and semi colons, so that one sentence may begin in one place and end in another.
"If personality is an unbroken series of successful gestures, then there was something gorgeous about him, some heightened sensitivity to the promises of life, as if he were related to one of those intricate machines that register earthquakes ten thousand miles away."
He's also very descriptive by describing each character and setting in immense detail both through showing and telling. It also helps to capture depths of meaning beyond what few words could possibly do. By his rich word choice, he is able to give meaning to people and things even in his short sentences and phrases.
Point of View :
Nick, being the narrator, has the leading point of view, however the author makes his role smaller than the characters he tells about, in that he isn't truly the center of attention in the story. Though the story does follow him, wherever he is or goes, he tells about other people.
- Gatsby is the rich neighbor of Nick who captures his attention during the summer. Gatsby comes from a poor background and is a self made man. He amazes Nick from the start. Gatsby’s choices are influenced by his love for Daisy. Gatsby is very mysterious and this captures Nick’s attention even more. Gatsby, the tragic lover, remains a mystery throughout, even when revealing his secret to Nick.
- Nick is the narrator of the story and is described as very open-minded. Nick is very quiet and is more of a listener in the novel. He observes the actions of those around him, and is not unmoved by them. Nick is very passive. Nick is sick of the Roaring Twenties rules and laws.
- Daisy is described as very attractive in both personality and beauty. Her marriage to Tom Buchanan has improved her success substantially, although her relationship with Tom is fault as he is an adulterer. Once reunited with Gatsby she feels a moment of passion and happiness. Although she is very simple minded. She struggles to determine what type of life she wants to lead and with whom she wishes to spend that life.
- Tom is a very dominant and determined character. Tom is very destructive and doesn’t consider the effects that he has on others. Tom is very unfaithful cheating on Daisy with Myrtle. He pretends to help Myrtle’s husband just so he can keep his affair with Myrtle going on. He is a destructive person who doesn’t care for others but his own best interest.
- Mrtyle is very unfaithful to her husband. She cheats on him with Tom behind his back. She is also passive seeing that she will suffer through Tom's degration of her. She does it just so she can live a pretentious life.
When Wolfsheim is introduced, the author illustrates the character lacking a higher education and how he is a member of the working class . This also supports that those who live in the West Egg are not like those of the East due to education.
- Gatsby represents the inevitable destruction that accompanies quick and illegitimately earned wealth. He can symbolize the American Dream but only achieved it in a way that others wouldn’t call achieving. He is the faults of the American Dream that people hope for but can never achieve truthfully. This is a contextual symbol.
The Valley of Ashes
- The valley of ashes represents the corruption and social decay that came with the lavish and careless lifestyles of the rich during the 1920's. People weren’t ready to live so care free which ruined many people. The law had less power than it did before with many laws being broken like the alcohol prohibition. Those who lived in the Valley of Ashes lived in poverty as the Wilson family did. This is a contextual symbol.
- Nick Carraway, tucked nicely away in his house, represents a clear and unbiased view of the 1920's. This is the reason why Carraway is the narrator. His views aren’t biased by the other people and only shows admiration. Carraway is a contextual symbol.
- The lights that bound the lovers together within their happiness. The lights represent the love between the two characters. Despite how far they are from each other they had the lights to bring hope to them that one day they will be reunited and happy again. This is a contextual symbol.
- Gatsby's car represents his financial status. He is very wealthy and has a luxurious lifestyle. It shows his materialistic views and how he uses his materials to try and get Daisy to love him again. He believes that his material object may actually get her love again. This is a contextual symbol.
Wilson killing Gatsby presents dramatic irony by the fact that Wilson thought Gatsby to be the murderer of his wife, while it was in fact Daisy.
Gatsby builds up in Daisy in his mind and goes to extravagant measures to impress her, but she turns out to be shallow and doesn't live up to his idealizations.
"Gatsby had an extraordinary gift for hope..."
Gatsby was wildly popular yet when he died, no one attended his funeral.
American dream to live a carefree-life but Fitzgerald shows us the horror of this care free life by Tom and Daisy's inability to care.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott.
The Great Gatsby
. New York, NY: Scribner, 2004. Print.
The tone can be seen as conflicting because throughout the novel there is always a sense of disagreement and conflict between many of the characters. The conflicting tone also adds a sense of suspense and mystery since it is unknown how many of the character’s conflicts ,if any, are going to be resolved.
The pessimistic tone of
The Great Gatsby
adds a gloomy and depressed feel . This can be felt and interpreted by the carelessness of the wealthy along with Gatsby’s and Myrtle’s death. The presence of The Valley of Ashes also helps add a depressing and hopeless tone that affects the entire novel.
Symbols Part 2 :
The enchanted colors :
Gold - conflates wealth and beauty
Yellow - wealth and death
Gatsby's car is yellow
Dr. T.J. Eckleberg's glasses are yellow
Myrtle Wilson's house is yellow
Gatsby's car is yellow
Gatsby's tie is yellow
The buttons on Daisy's dress are yellow
Nick Carraway tells the story of his first time in Newy York and a man by the name of Jay Gatsby. He starts his story with moving into the West Egg. He describes it as "the less fashionable of the two." He visits his cousin Daisy Buchanan, and her husband Tom Buchanan in the fashionable East Egg. The visit with Daisy is brief but Nick gets to find out that Tom has a mistress and about a man named Gatsby, which seemed to surprise Daisy. Afterward, Nick returns to the West
Egg only to see a man at the dock, who is revealed to be Gatsby, reaching out to a faint green light at the end of the dock.
Tom takes Nick to city, specifically to a garage belonging to George Wilson, and its there that Nick meets Tom's mistress, Myrtle Wilson. Tom and Nick then head to her apartment for a party. Nick finally receives an invitation to attend one of Gatsby's extravagant parties. He encounters Jordan at the party, and hears suspicious rumors about Gatsby from the guests before finally meeting the mysterious Gatsby.
As Nick attends more parties and rides around with Gatsby in his yellow car, Nick learns more and more about Gatsby's past. However, he then says that Jordan will tell him about an event that impacted Gatsby's life.
Jordan reveals that Gatsby and Daisy were once in a relationship. She married Tom while he was at war, and yet Gatsby has loved her for the past five years though they haven't met since. He threw all those parties hoping that she would come.
Gatsby takes advantage of Nick by of him to get closer to Daisy. Nick agreed to invite Daisy to his home where Gatsby and Daisy could meet once again and they finally reunite. It is then revealed that Gatsby was poor and went by James Gatz and somehow inherited his wealth. Gatsby and Daisy continue to meet and soon they have a flirtatious relationship together. But Tom begins to suspect things between them where Gatsby tries very hard to keep his secret hiden.
The climax begins in the city when Tom and Gatsby start arguing over who gets to be with Daisy. However, Daisy is unable to make difficult decisions and stays with her husband. Everyone drives back home when Myrtle is hit and killed by Gatsby car (in which Daisy is driving and Gatsby is sitting in the passenger seat). Gatsby decides to take the fault for Daisy and Tom takes full advantage of it by telling George where to find Gatsby.
George shoots and kills Gatsby while he was swimming in his pool. As for Tom and Daisy, they leave their mess behind while Nick arranges a small funeral for Gatsby. Sadly, no one arrives and Nick, sickened by the people and the environment, moves back to the Midwest.
" above the gray land and the spasm of bleak dust which drift endlessly over it, you perceive, after a moment, the eyes of Dr. T.J. Eckleberg
1.When one pushes the emotions of desire or materialism to the brink, the results are immediately catastrophic.
2.Desire feeds its own hunger
3.The greed of some can break the humanity of others.
4.Trying to fill emptiness with wealth or immediate gratification will only lead to more emotional desperation.
5.If you reach for the past you will not see the reality of your present or future until it's too late to discover your reality.