February 8, 2005

The Great Gatsby

One of the most troubling things I found about Gatsby’s character was his inability to let go of the past. I understand that he fell in love with Daisy and vice-versa before going to war, but even after finding out that she was married to another man; he decides to become wealthy for her and then buy a house across the bay from Daisy. He basically lives in hopes of being with her...
Gatsby threw lavish parties just so that Daisy might show up, as most of the guests were strangers anyway. However, despite hosting frequent parties, Daisy never attended. Still, Gatsby is relentless and plans through Jordan and Nick to encounter Daisy coincidentally, as he plans for Daisy to meet Nick at his house for tea, and Gatsby will just happen to “drop by.” I believe that Gatsby portrays great romanticism and ambition; however, Daisy seems to be unworthy of the attention. It is assumed that Tom wooed Daisy with his money. Tom bought Daisy a three thousand dollar pearl necklace, but it meant nothing to her. Her wedding day proved an uncertainty of her love for Tom. Daisy is very materialistic, such as when she goes to Gatsby’s home for the first time, and sobs because of his beautiful shirts. It has been stated that Daisy and Gatsby fell in love before he went to war, however; he did not have money, and Daisy grew tired of waiting, so she married Tom. Although there was a connection between Daisy and Gatsby, I guess in this case, love was not enough for her. Daisy’s marriage to Tom is based on false pretenses… neither are happy in the relationship but must pretend to be in order to maintain the image to others and for their child. Divorce was unheard of in that time, so affairs were prominent. The reunion between Daisy and Gatsby was powerful. They obviously still share feelings for one another, and Daisy seems to be consumed with regret for marrying Tom. It just seems to me that in this story, everyone who is undeserving has everything. They are miserable and indulgent in affairs and parties. The wealthy are not concerned with the feelings of others, but only fulfilling their pleasures. Nothing seems to be enough. Gatsby left behind Daisy to serve overseas, and was never able to get over her. He did not inherit his money, and despite rumors that he made his money illegally, he at least worked for it. He would stop at nothing to get what he wanted. Gatsby was trying to achieve the American Dream. All of the characters in this story seem to have their priorities and lives in disarray. During the 1920’s time period, the wealthy often spent their time partying, having affairs, and spending money. The characters in this story are members of high society, and I found most to be empty and meaningless. However, Gatsby was a dreamer and stayed dedicated to one woman over years, Daisy, despite her tendency to be materialistic. Gatsby, unlike other characters in this story, did whatever was necessary to attain what he wanted, and did not engage so much in drinking and having affairs. Although Gatsby came across as disappointing in conversation, he was unlike any of the other characters in this story, which made him great.

Posted by KaylaTurano at February 8, 2005 11:25 PM
Comments

Kayla- I thought that you had an interesting take on Daisy and Gatsby's relationship. I read the text as if Daisy really did fall in love with Gatsby. I'm not a huge romantic, however for whatever reason, this story tugged at my heart. Maybe it has to deal with current stories we hear today of officers having to leave their loved ones behind, as Gatsby did. I do believe that Gatsby was Daisy's true love, and that the only reason she married Tom was to, as society expects, move on and marry wealthy. I would say if she had to choose a second, I guess Tom was the best answer for that.
Why do I say that she really did fall in love with him? Well, after she met Jay Gatsby, this solider which she fell in love with, she would go through different emotions. She was obviously in love with him, and then when he had to leave, she left her family to say good-bye to him. After that Fitzgerald has her 'curving' her dating style. I would venture to guess in reaction to the loss she felt when he had to leave.
Another emotion services during her wedding night. She is in the bath tub, reading a letter presumably but Gatsby, and makes a statement that she can't marry Tom, and to call the ceremony off.
The last emotion worth mentioning is when the name ‘Gatsby’ resurfaces. She is intrigued and wants to know if it is the same man which she fell in love with six years ago. Then after meeting for the first time in six years they seemingly started where the relationship or attraction had ended.
That to me is love, when it knows more than the poor souls who are involved do. As far as Daisy being materialistic, I understand where the idea would come from, however I wonder how many women were materialistic mainly do to, ‘cultural default’?
I also wanted to say that your analysis on Gatsby was well done, and that I agree with you there!

Posted by: Kristen Zappalla at February 9, 2005 6:08 PM

Kayla...I thought that you had an interesting take on the Gatsby and Daisy relationship. I agree with you that he spent more time than he should have in the past. Not only does he love Gatsby, but is obsessed, possibly even stalkerish. However, sometimes love can consume someone, and in this case it has obviously consumed Jay Gatsby. I think there is a love between Jay and Daisy, but i don't think either will ever live up to the others expectations as eluded by Jordan Baker. Good entry!

Posted by: MaggiQuinlan at February 10, 2005 12:02 AM
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