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THE GREAT GASTBY
Transcript of THE GREAT GASTBY
According to one of the characters in Azar Nafisi's contemporary memoir,
Reading Lolita in Tehran,
the only "sympathetic" person in the novel is "the cuckolded husband, Mr. Wilson." What aspects of
The Great Gatsby
might be offered as grounds for such a claim, and is the claim ultimately convincing?
Cheats on Daisy with a scandalous wench.
Why can Wilson be considered The "Most Sympathetic"?
"But you can't fool God!"
Wilson Is Not So Sympathetic After All...
"'I’ve got my wife locked in up there,' explained Wilson calmly. 'She’s going to stay there till the day after to-morrow, and then we’re going to move away.'” (Fitzgerald 136).
Ultimately locked his wife in her room, entrapping her within the yellow brick prison that George called his home and office; his fear of abandonment stronger than his sympathy for the love of his life.
Nick Carraway displays much sympathy throughout the novel, most especially towards his good friend, Jay Gatsby.
He is more than willing to help Gatsby get in touch with Daisy again.
"'I talked to miss Baker,' i said after a moment. 'I'm going to call up Daisy to-morrow and invite her over her to tea'" (Fitzgerald 82).
In Chapter 8, Gatsby begins to lose hope in his future with Daisy since she did not come out to him when he waited for her all night. He looks to Nick for some comfort and reassurance.
Wilson decides to move west since that's what Myrtle has been wanting for ten years.
"'I've been here too long. I want to get away. My Wife and I want to go West.' 'Your wife does' Tom, startled. 'She's been talking about it for ten years'" (Fitzgerald 123).
Why can Wilson be Considered the "most sympathetic"?
Enraged, George goes down the path of what he believes is a necessary redemption in the eyes of God: to kill the man who murdered his wife.
Husband/Widow of Myrtle Wilson (who is the mistress of Tom Buchanan)
Lives in the Valley of Ashes
Owner of Wilson’s Motors
Does business with Tom
Poor, needs money
Described as "so dumb he doesn't know he's alive" (Fitzgerald 26).
Physically felt sick when he found out that Myrtle was having an affair.
Felt guilty because he felt like he did not take care of Myrtle as well as he should have which led her to have an affair.
"He had discovered that Myrtle had some sort of life apart from him in another world, and the shock had made him physically sick... Wilson was so sick that he looked guilty, unforgivably guilty as if he just got some poor girl with child " (Fitzgerald 124).
Tolerated Myrtle's attitude towards him even though she treated him poorly.
"She smiled slowly and, walking through her husband as if he were a ghost, shook hands with Tom...'Get some chairs, why don't you, so somebody could sit down'...'Oh sure,' Wilson agreed hurriedly" (Fitzgerald 26).
"He was crazy enough to kill me... His hand was on a revolver in his pocket every minute he was in the house" (Fitzgerald 178).
Thanks for watching
Background on George Wilson
After Gatsby's death, and hearing that Daisy and TOm had left town, Nick felt the need to look after him and find people to mourn for him.
"I wanted to get somebody for him. I wanted to go into the room where he lay and reassure him: 'I'll get somebody for you Gatsby. Don't worry. Just trust me and I'll get somebody for you-'" (Fitzgerald 164).
Nick Contacted several people asking if they can attend Gatsby's funeral, but no one was able to go.
"'They're a rotten crowd,' I shouted across the lawn. 'You're worth the whole damn bunch put together.' I've always been glad I said that" (Fitzgerald 154).
Nick Carraway (continued)
"They were careless people, Tom and daisy- They smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness...and let other people clean up the mess they had made..." (Fitzgerald 179).
“She never loved you, do you hear?” he cried. “She only married you because I was poor and she was tired of waiting for me. It was a terrible mistake, but in her heart she never loved any one except me!” (Fitzgerald 130)
"I called up daisy half an hour after we found him, called her instinctively and without hesitation. But she and tom had gone away early that afternoon, and taken baggage with them" (Fitzgerald 164).