Analysis Of The Great Gatsby Essay Research

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Analysis Of The Great Gatsby Essay, Research Paper ClassicNote on The Great Gatsby Short Summary of The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby is a specific portrait of American society during the Roaring Twenties, yet tells the quintessential American story of a man rising from rags to riches only to find that whatever benefits his wealth affords, it cannot grant him the privileges of class and status. The central character is Jay Gatsby, a wealthy New Yorker of an undetermined occupation known mostly for the lavish parties he throws every weekend at his mansion but suspected of being involved in illegal bootlegging and other clandestine activities. However, the narrator is Nick Carraway, a young mid-westerner from a prominent family who came to New York

to enter the bond business. Carraway is involved in all of the events of the novel, yet does not play a significant active role; he is only a passive observer. When Nick arrives in New York, he soon visits his relatives, the Buchanans, who live in East Egg. Nick resides in the nearby (and less fashionable) West Egg, where Gatsby also lives. Like Nick, Tom Buchanan is from a prominent family from the mid-west. Tom is a former athlete at Yale, a vulgar and insecure man preoccupied with the decline of society and of class boundaries. It is soon revealed that Tom is having an affair with a woman in the city. His wife, Daisy, is Nick’s second cousin. She carries herself with an insubstantial manner. While seemingly na?ve, she claims to be terribly sophisticated. Also at the

Buchanans’ home is Jordan Baker, a professional golfer and close friend of Daisy. After visiting Tom and Daisy, Nick goes home that night, where he sees Gatsby watching a green light across the bay. He stretches his arms out toward it, as if to grasp the green light. Tom Buchanan takes Nick into New York, and on the way they stop at George Wilson’s garage. Tom has been having an affair with his wife, Myrtle, and Tom tells her to join them later in the city. The garage is in the ‘valley of ashes,’ as Fitzgerald describes it, a vast, desolate area. Other than Wilson’s garage, the only other feature of note is a large advertisement for an optometrist, two large eyes that look over the barren area. When Tom and Nick arrive in the city, they visit with Myrtle and her sister,

Catherine McKee. They gossip about Gatsby, who they believe to be related to the Kaiser or perhaps a murderer. Around Tom and away from her husband, the earthy Myrtle Wilson adopts an affected, pretentious tone. She and Tom argue about Daisy, and Tom breaks her nose. Nick Carraway and Jordan Baker attend a party at Gatsby’s mansion. At the party, few of the attendees are actually invited guests or even know Gatsby. Even Nick, when he first meets Gatsby, does not recognize him. Gatsby asks to speak to Jordan Baker alone, and after talking with Gatsby for a significant time she tells Nick that she learned some remarkable news which she cannot yet tell him. During this time, Nick and Jordan begin a half-hearted romance, spending time together occasionally while often losing sight

of one another. Some time later, Gatsby visits Nick’s home and invites him to lunch. At this point Gatsby’s origins are unclear, but Gatsby clarifies the story: he tells Nick that he is from a wealthy San Francisco and was educated at Oxford after serving in the Great War (for which he received a number of decorations). However, his tentative manner indicates that he may be lying to Nick. He tells Nick that Jordan Baker soon will reveal to Nick the remarkable news that Gatsby had told her. At lunch, Gatsby introduces Nick to an associate, Meyer Wolfsheim, a notorious criminal noted for fixing the 1919 World Series. When Nick sees the Buchanans there, Gatsby mysteriously avoids them. Later, Jordan Baker tells Nick the story of Gatsby, recounting that he had fallen in love with