February 17, 2005

The Great Gatsby 2

After discussing this novel in last week's class, I began to question my former beliefs regarding many of the characters and their motives. Therefore, I decided to reread the entire story, from the beginning. As a reader, I tend to read things too fast the first time through. As a result, I realized I missed a lot of important details throughout the story.

I couldn't have made a better decision to reread the story from the beginning. I feel I was able to get a better handle on the story and see things my coursemates presented in class dicussions.

I am undoubtedly, a hopeless romantic... and from the beginning I saw Gatsby as a very reserved but faithful and loving man who had never let go of his love for Daisy. Daisy's character is still questionable to me... I do not feel that Nick really shows who she is. I wonder if Daisy really knew what true love was. Gatsby was different from all of the other men in her younger years... but he was poor, and poor boys didn't marry the rich girls. Daisy's struggle was evident from the beginning. She loved Gatsby but was planning to marry Tom. She admitted that she had "changed her mind," but later got herself cleaned up and went along with it anyway. She grew tired of waiting, and seemed to lack assertiveness.

This story does tug at my heart. I felt for Gatsby and saw his determination throughout the story. He wasn't a threat to Tom... Tom couldn't compare to Gatsby as far as I am concerned. Tom was just a brute of a man and poor husband and father. In the first few chapters, we can see that he often cuts off Daisy while she is speaking, and doesn't really listen to what she is saying. Also, he is quite open about his affair with Mrytle. I did feel some sympathy for Daisy, but she seems too caught up in money and appearance.

I definitely am a strong believer that Gatsby was a great man. I do not feel the title was intended to be ironic; but rather, if one really engages in the story and reads between the lines, it is evident that Gatsby kept to himself for the most part of his life... but Nick's character was able to get to really know him by the end of the story. Although some may argue that Gatsby was only great because of his money and possessions; I feel that his motivation and goals were justified as he had a truly pure heart. On page 173, Gatsby's father tells Nick of his son's "Schedule" he wrote up years ago. This really tugged at my heart... Gatsby was definitely motivated and dedicated to achieve his dreams... it is questionable as to whether or not he got what he truly wanted, but Daisy did admit her love for him (as well as her husband, Tom). Money didn't mean much to Gatsby, and it obviously hadn't made many other of the wealthy characters happy. Gatsby was a man of big dreams, and perhaps he was better off not being of this world. He seemed to be ahead of his time. Nick said it best when he told Gatsby, "They're a rotten crowd. You're worth the whole damn bunch put together" (p.154).

Posted by KaylaTurano at February 17, 2005 5:56 PM
Comments

Hey Kayla,
I def. alos think that Gatsby is a great man! I think that because Nick focused so much on Gatsby there was no way to really undertsnad any of the other characters. Daisy is confusing to me also. I have no idea what she wanted or why she did the things that she did. There are many things that people miss when reading something for the first time because you don't know what to expect, but going back def. helps alot. I'm glad you liked the book!

Posted by: Gina at February 28, 2005 12:28 PM

Kayla, I came to your site hoping to find your responses to this week's readings. I hope you'll get them up soon.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at March 2, 2005 9:13 AM
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