The Great Gatsby is a cynical and complicated romantic novel that explores the desire for people to become economically successful at whatever cost. The novel also revolves around the use of money to win love and friendship. The antagonist, Nick Carraway moves from Minnesota to New York where he plans to achieve the American dream by working as a bond salesman. He settles in West Egg which is a suburb of New York and is situated along Long Island. Nick reunites with his old school friend and graduate, Tom, who is engaged to his cousin, Daisy while at West Egg. Nick also makes friends while in West Egg like; Jordan who is a cynical professional golfer and Gatsby, who is a mysteriously wealthy man. In the event, Nick gets tied up in the relationships of Gatsby, Tom, and the Wilsons. The experience in New York also brings out the different classes and the rots in the city related to money. The novel just after World War I when there were a lot of opportunities for people to become economically successful.
The first five chapters of the book make the reader familiar with the character is the novel and the types of lives that they live. From the first five chapters, the reader learns of the primary roles of the characters and their goals in West Egg. When Tom, Daisy, Jordan, and Nick meet for the first time, Tom is depicted as a racist as he tells of what he thought after reading a novel (Scott 16). According to him, people of color are to blame for the decline of civilization. Tom is also an indifferent person as he takes Nick to go and meet his mistress, Myrtle in New York even though he is in a relationship with Daisy, Nick's cousin. Nick also learns of his mysterious neighbor, Gatsby when he catches him staring and stretching his arms towards the sea although there is nothing in particular in the sea apart from the blue light blinking at the end of the deck (Scott 23 - 24). After Nick had been invited to one of Gatsby's lavish parties, he learns of the hypocrisy in the town and that the man who lives a lavish life is barely known by anyone at the party.
Gatsby continues to throw lavish parties until he tells Nick to invite Daisy over at her house. Gatsby's main aim is to win Daisy back. Daisy and Gatsby met while in military school together, and now that Gatsby has gathered enough wealth, he is confident that he can win Daisy again since she is materialistic and even expresses this at one of Gatsby's lavish parties. In chapter 6, Gatsby invites Daisy, Jordan, Tom, Nick and some of his friends to yet another lavish party (Scott 110). It is at this point where one learns the character of Gatsby and his aim for using whatever means to get wealthy. As they have a conversation with Nick, Nick tells him that he can't repeat the past and he replies by saying, Of course, I can. The uncorrupted obsession only motivates him for Daisy.
All hell breaks loose when the friends decide to go for summer in Manhattan. Both Tom and Daisy have different affairs. Nick, on the other hand, had already called home to break up with his girlfriend to start having an affair with Jorden. At a hotel plaza in Manhattan, Tom realizes that Gatsby and Daisy have an affair and they break out. Tom then lets off the truth that Gatsby's money is from selling illegal things (Scott 140 -145). Gatsby and Daisy leave the hotel, and on their way home, Daisy hits Myrtle, Toms, lover who then dies. Tom is mad at Gatsby and is convinced that he is responsible for killing his mistress and proceeds to tell Myrtles husband that is Gatsby who owns the car that ran over his wife. Out of rage, George Wilson, Myrtle's husband, proceeds to kill Gatsby.
The novel brings out the different classes that emerged after the world war and the manner in which they related. There was in fact, no close relation except for hatred. The old money class includes Tom and Daisy who were wealthy but hide behind the veer of civilization. The new money includes Gatsby who was driven by the desire to achieve the American dream that whatever cost. Lastly, there is no money class like Nick and the Wilsons who were in search of wealth but through the right channels (Donaldson 187).
The Great Gatsby is a great novel that depicts the extent to which people can go to prove how much they love someone. George Wilson murders Gatsby because he believes that he is the one who hit his wife. Tom, on the other hand, tells Wilson that Gatsby hit his wife because Gatsby had a relationship with Daisy. It is not now evident why Daisy hit Mrs. Wilson and did not bother to stop and attend to her. The novel also brings out the ill in marriages and relationships. The characters show less concern about having affairs outside their relationships, and this is what ruins their friendship. There are betrayal and dishonesty in their relationships.
Donaldson, Scott. "Possessions in The Great Gatsby." The southern review 37.2 (2001): 187.
Scott, Fitzgerald F.The Great Gatsby. Ripol Classic Publishing, 2017.
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