February 14, 2005

Gatsby II

The entire Gatsby saga seems like a battle for male supremacy, with Daisy as the "prize". When Nick first enters the drama, it is common knowledge that Tom has a mistress and acts with impunity, trammeling Daisy's self-esteem with the humiliation. Gatsby's attempt to win Daisy strikes directly at Tom's sense of masculine superiority, as Daisy is now in the position to shame him in the eyes of others. In order to regain his own self-esteem, he has to challenge Gatsby directly in the hotel room. I think that it's not the information that Tom dredged up about Gatsby that causes Daisy to lose interest in him but his embarrassed reaction that he cannot conceal. Tom now appears in Daisy's eyes as the stronger of the two. Daisy essentially used Gatsby to strike back at her husband and reestablish her marriage relationship as between equals. Although throughout most of the story Daisy appears a rather weak and indecisive character, the end of the story [by her manipulation of both Gatsby and Tom AND her killing of her husband's mistress (I'm not sure if the accident was intentional or not but she DID lead Tom to believe that Gatsby was driving, leading to G's death)] shows that she is just as devious as any other character in the novel and actually achieves more of her desires than any of the others.

Posted by JamesStutzman at February 14, 2005 3:16 PM

I can see wher you are comming from with the whole idea of Daisy using Gatsby to win her husband back, but I truthfully don't believe that she was ever the pawn in this story. First of all she was always using little tricks like talking low or mumbeling to pull people into her so that she got all of their attention. Secondly if she were so belittled by Tom she would have nevr fought with him that first night Nick met them when his mistress called, and the way she had Jordan at her side was another thing that caught my eye. She said that it was for Jordan's good due to being raised by an elderly aunt, but you can't tell me that she hadn't heard of Gatsby being on the other island and knowiing of Jordan's love of parties. Well she had the perfect patsy to lead Gatsby right to her. I truly believe the whole ting was set up by Miss Daisy to acomplish two thing one see if she truly still loved thsi man Gatsby, and two pay her husband back for all the things he had done to her.

Posted by: Tammy Roberts at February 14, 2005 9:23 PM

You talk about Daisy having her desires being fulfilled, I never thought about it like that before. I think you are right. She definatly got what she wanted at the end. Tammy raised a good point too, there had to have been a good chance that Daisy knew about Gatsby. By the way, what did you think about Tom and Daisy skipping town at the end? I thought that was pretty messed up, they destroyed lives and then ran away so that someone else would have to take care of the problem. I say that Tom and Daisy are both very selfish people.

Posted by: Sue at February 15, 2005 10:36 PM

Tammy's point about Daisy knowing about Gatsby is a good one! I mean, he's living in a freakin' mansion, right? That's not exactly discreet. When you look at Daisy in that light, she's not a nice character at all! ;c)

Also, good point about Daisy killing her husband's mistress - it -is- a little fishy, isn't it? I agree with you - Daisy definitely got what she wanted in the end: Security.

She didn't have to worry about Tom hooking up with Mrytle -and- she didn't have to worry about whether or not she had any feelings for Gatsby. So she could sink securely into her life of material excess without a care in the world. Freaky.

Posted by: moira at February 16, 2005 4:39 PM
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