A Lesson from Father

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Chapter one.
On the first page, Nick is explaining his father's advice
"Whenever you feel like criticizing any one," he told me, "just remember that all the people in this world haven't had the advantages that you've had."

This quote really hits home with me because of just leaving high school about a year ago and entering the real world. Everyone was so judgmental of people, and even I was guilty of this sometimes. His father is right, especially when you didn't know the person you were judging. Who knows what that person has gone though? There are always people who have it worse than you.

Later in the chapter Daisy was telling Nick about her daughter being born.

"She told me it was a girl, and so I turned my head away and wept. 'All right,' I said, 'I'm glad it's a girl. And I hope she'll be a fool---that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.'
Women have come such a long way since the 1800's, did Fitzgerald really have to be that harsh? Tom has a mistress and his wife is disgusted in having a girl because she think they are just fools?


The novel is set in in the 1920s, and you're right, things now are very different. What artistic purpose does it serve when Fitzgerald sets up a situation like this? Every author has to create a character, give that character obstacles, and then describe what happens when the character tries to overcome the obstacles. What do we learn about Daisy from this story about the birth of her child? What do we learn about her Daisy from the fact that she chooses to tell this story at a dinner party? Daisy isn't the protagonist, but you are right to observe that her character plays a big role in the story as it begins to unfold.

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