east and west egg great gatsby

West Egg is where Nick and Gatsby live, and East Egg is where Daisy and Tom live. The language used to introduce these two locations is rich with references to. Abstract. The aim of this research is to highlight the symbolic meaning of east and west in Fitzgerald's novel The Great Gatsby. The West Egg is the home of. Across the water in the more refined village of East Egg live his cousin Daisy and her brutish, absurdly wealthy husband Tom Buchanan. Early in the summer Nick.

East and west egg great gatsby -

I Love The Great Gatsby, Even if it Doesn’t Love Me Back

The books we love don’t always love us back. Like so many of us, I first read The Great Gatsby when I was a 16-year-old high school kid and Gatsby’s narrator Nick Carraway was the ripe old age of 29-about-to-turn-30 (of course, he still is). Nick was living in the most exciting city in the world, working at a job where in a few short years he might be making a fortune, and spending his evenings hobnobbing with his rich and connected relatives. I, on the other hand, lived in lower working-class, rural North Carolina and was one of the first generation of post-integrationist southern black kids. Starting from the actual day I turned 16, I worked at a fast food restaurant making less than five dollars an hour, and if I was lucky I spent my free time in front of a television or in the middle of a book. Let’s just say Nick’s life was very different from mine.

Still, I loved Nick. I was consumed by the glamour of his story and his telling of it: the lingering descriptions of glittering parties and decorated women. The romance! I loved the thrill of love, requited or not, and the enigmatic portentous green light, a symbol of the safe harbor that love should be but often isn’t. Reading Gatsby felt like an initiation into a rich, romantic, sophisticated, adult world that I, a poor, small town, black girl, desperately wanted to know. And the voice of Nick Carraway, his unfussy intelligence, his elegiac musings, his surprising turns of phrases (“secret griefs of wild, unknown men,” he says on the first page!) hooked me early and completely. The writing is not showy or precious but clear, with simple, lyrical declarations like the hardest easy sentences we write or say: Nothing more can be done. I love you. I want you back.

Gatsby drew me in like that. Maybe some of you have fallen hard and fast in love, and you know it is a heady and wonderful feeling, vertigo, breathlessness. You lose weight. Your skin becomes effervescent, as if parts of you could twinkle off. You feel dangerous and endangered. At first that danger is part of the giddy wonder of it, but soon you find yourself on your guard. You wonder what you have missed mid-swoon. What surprise lurks for you (disgusting personal habit, unforgivable character flaw) that you could not predict and have had no time to discover for yourself? Falling into the world of a classic book (or even a contemporary one) gives me that loving feeling, both exhilarated and immediately wary.

However swept up and away I may be, I can’t help but fear that the door of the book will suddenly close in my face by excluding or demeaning people of color, women, the poor; that it will announce directly or indirectly that I am not the target, not even a member of the desired audience, that the story was not written for me.

 

“However swept up and away I may be, I can’t help but fear that the door of the book will suddenly close in my face by excluding or demeaning people of color, women, the poor.”

 

I know that the job of literature is to showcase the lives of characters, with all their perplexing perversities, petty shortsightednesses, and bad judgements. I don’t expect or even want to be preached to by characters that know all, do and think all the right things, and never make crucial mistakes. People have limitations that are difficult to stomach sometimes. Good characters are similarly flawed. But still it hurts to find yourself set outside, the butt of the joke. And it is especially painful when the joker is a character you admire. So when the cruel, violent bully Tom Buchanan declares The Rise of the Coloured Empires a prophetic book that admonishes whites to “watch out or these other races will have control of things,” or when Daisy Buchanan refers to her “white girlhood,” or when Nick’s almost-girlfriend, the lying tennis player Jordan Baker, announces that “we are all white here” during one of the most intense scenes of the novel, I smart from these comments, feel pushed away. But Nick Carraway, good-hearted, thoughtful Nick, who starts the book with his father’s generous admonishment—“Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone . . . just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had”—felt like the book’s exception.

F. Scott Fitzgerald no doubt saw a great deal of himself in Nick. In Fitzgerald’s essay series “The Crack Up,” he speaks of his own egalitarian impulses. “Like most midwesterners, I have never had any but the vaguest race prejudices” he writes. However when he felt he was cracking up, he hated most everyone in equal measure: “In these latter days I couldn’t stand the sight of Celts, English, Politicians, Strangers, Virginians, Negroes (light or dark), Hunting People, or retail clerks, and middlemen in general, all writers (I avoided writers carefully because they can perpetuate trouble as no one else can.”

I laugh every time I read Virginians and Negroes (light or dark). Clearly Fitzgerald is being flippant here, but it is easy to see Nick in this sentence. Nick, the generous cipher, the character who stands in for us (the readers), the decent outsider, a character who can be equally non-judgmental at an assignation with Tom Buchanan’s mistress and her strange group of reveling friends, or with a known gangster, or with the haughty beauty Jordan Baker. But then that same Nick sees a limousine “driven by a white chauffeur, in which sat three modish negroes, two bucks and a girl.” And he announces that “Anything can happen now that we’ve slid over this bridge.” It hurts worse when Nick seems to share some of the thinking of Tom Buchanan, to see a world changing too quickly and unpredictably, becoming an unrecognizable and suspicious place.

Great books are great because they allow characters to be their difficult selves, to work through those difficulties (or not) and change (or not). These books require us to use our heads, to look at the totality of the story and the mission of the work. The reason Gatsby is successful, the reason I am a great fan, and why I can be a fan without an asterisk or footnote, is Nick. He has a front row seat to this moneyed world and the cruel indifference those privileged few have for the striving and struggling masses. Harm comes to everyone who is not buffered by the power of wealth and class. Nick can be a part of that moneyed class, in ways that Gatsby or the Jewish gangster cannot, and certainly in ways that the rich black limousine riders cannot—but Nick rejects that life.

Ultimately, The Great Gatsby is also about the Great Nick, who in order to remain the uncompromised egalitarian he aspires to be has to leave the scene, though his exit is much less dramatic than Gatsby’s. This leaving, like all disavowals, is not without pain. Nick does not pretend that he has not been affected by the pull of the glimmering world he leaves behind, and he doesn’t pretend that a part of him is not grieving because he can never nest on the right egg. In the “Crack Up,” Fitzgerald says the measure of a first rate intelligence is to hold two opposing ideas in one’s head at the same time and still function. Because of his general decency, Nick can function. He can even thrive. But not in East or West Egg. Like most of us, Nick is not a revolutionary or a prophet. He cannot convert the blue bloods. He can only leave them.

If Gatsby is better than the whole lot of them, as Nick tells us, then perhaps Nick is as well. But he realizes more than Gatsby ever could (or would get a chance to know) that what he saw on the horizon was just a green light—not love at all and not even a signifier of it. However beautiful, however much we admire the glow, it is but a shimmering reflection, no more substantial than light on water. The way that we beat on, boats against that current, so to speak, is by continuing to make the best lives we can, knocking on doors, even the ones we believe will never completely open. The book so admired as synonymous with the gilded Jazz Age is a book for our own time too, a time that is also characterized by economic and racial fear, a time of great wealth for a few and great uncertainty for many. The world is defined by change. We cannot change the world. We must change the world. Can we hold these ideas in our heads at the same time? The fact that we can and we must try for better for everyone is a bold and uncommon message for our times from a slim little book written nearly a century ago.

The books we love don’t always love us back. But how amazing when they do.

Источник: https://lithub.com/i-love-the-great-gatsby-even-if-it-doesnt-love-me-back/

The Great Gatsby Analysis

map

In The Great Gatsby, West Egg and East Egg are polar opposites of one another.  Coincidentally, West Egg and East Egg are separated by a body of water.  Fitzgerald uses these settings in order to highlight the differences in social class that were prevalent in the 1920s (one can also argue that they are still prevalent today).

As we discussed, East Egg is OLD money, meaning its inhabitants have money that has been passed down from many generations — it is in their blood.  East Egg is actually located in Manhasset — a still relatively affluent neighborhood today.  Remember that our vain and vapid characters Tom and Daisy Buchanan live there, which may explain their behavior. This means that they are aristocrats; Fitzgerald is highlighting on the remnants of aristocracy that still exist in America.  This is ironic considering we are supposed to be a democratic nation, yet in Gatsby, we still have aristocrats in power and controlling America’s wealth.  How then can the American Dream be possible when aristocrats still maintain most of the power?  This is a question we should consider for the rest of the novel.

West Egg, located in Great Neck, Long Island, inhabits Gatsby and our narrator, Nick Carraway.  West Egg inhabits those from NEW money, meaning their money has not been handed down from generation to generation.  On the contrary, they have made their money through entrepreneurship, crime (considering the boost in crime during the 1920s), or through working on Wall Street.  Nick is questionable, however, being that he lives in a house that he describes as an “eyesore”.  Daisy is his second cousin, so perhaps we assume him to have more money than he does; he claims he comes from a prominent family, but again this is questionable — would a “prominent” family from the Midwest allow their son to live in a somewhat decrepit house?  In addition, Nick claims that his father could only finance him for a year, highlighting on his lack of fortune.  Still, he possesses more status than those who live in the Valley of Ashes, which explains his residence in West Egg.

Interestingly enough,  Fitzgerald also lived where both Nick and Gatsby reside — Great Neck, Long Island.  Therefore, we can automatically assume that Fitzgerald is from new money.  Note that those who come from new money can never become old money no matter how hard they try!  It is not in their blood, and has not been passed down from generation to generation so there is a stark difference.  Keep this notion in mind for what is soon to come.

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Источник: https://greatgatsbyanalysis.wordpress.com/2014/03/24/east-egg-v-west-egg/

The Great Gatsby

1925 novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald

This article is about the novel. For the film, TV and opera adaptations, see The Great Gatsby (disambiguation).

The Great Gatsby is a 1925 novel by American writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. Set in the Jazz Age on Long Island, near New York City, the novel depicts first-person narrator Nick Carraway's interactions with mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby and Gatsby's obsession to reunite with his former lover, Daisy Buchanan.

The novel was inspired by a youthful romance Fitzgerald had with socialiteGinevra King, and the riotous parties he attended on Long Island's North Shore in 1922. Following a move to the French Riviera, Fitzgerald completed a rough draft of the novel in 1924. He submitted it to editor Maxwell Perkins, who persuaded Fitzgerald to revise the work over the following winter. After making revisions, Fitzgerald was satisfied with the text, but remained ambivalent about the book's title and considered several alternatives. Painter Francis Cugat's cover art greatly impressed Fitzgerald, and he incorporated aspects of it into the novel.

After its publication by Scribner's in April 1925, The Great Gatsby received generally favorable reviews, though some literary critics believed it did not equal Fitzgerald's previous efforts. Compared to his earlier novels, Gatsby was a commercial disappointment, selling fewer than 20,000 copies by October, and Fitzgerald's hopes of a monetary windfall from the novel were unrealized. When the author died in 1940, he believed himself to be a failure and his work forgotten.

During World War II, the novel experienced an abrupt surge in popularity when the Council on Books in Wartime distributed free copies to American soldiers serving overseas. This new-found popularity launched a critical and scholarly re-examination, and the work soon became a core part of most American high school curricula and a part of American popular culture. Numerous stage and film adaptations followed in the subsequent decades.

Gatsby continues to attract popular and scholarly attention. Contemporary scholars emphasize the novel's treatment of social class, inherited versus self-made wealth, race, and environmentalism, and its cynical attitude towards the American dream. One persistent item of criticism is an allegation of antisemitic stereotyping. The Great Gatsby is widely considered to be a literary masterwork and a contender for the title of the Great American Novel.

Historical and biographical context[edit]

Further information: Jazz Age and Prohibition in the United States

Set on the prosperous Long Island of 1922, The Great Gatsby provides a critical social history of Prohibition-era America during the Jazz Age.[a]F. Scott Fitzgerald's fictional narrative fully renders that period—known for its jazz music,[2] economic prosperity,[3]flapper culture,[4]libertine mores,[5] rebellious youth,[6] and ubiquitous speakeasies. Fitzgerald uses many of these 1920s societal developments to tell his story, from simple details like petting in automobiles to broader themes such as bootlegging as the illicit source of Gatsby's fortune.[7]

Fitzgerald conveys the hedonism of Jazz Age society by placing a relatable plotline within the historical context of the most raucous and flashiest era in American history.[3][9] In Fitzgerald's eyes, the era represented a morally permissive time when Americans of all ages became disillusioned with prevailing social norms and obsessed with pleasure-seeking.[10] Fitzgerald himself had a certain ambivalence towards the Jazz Age, an era whose themes he would later regard as reflective of events in his own life.[11]

The Great Gatsby reflects various events in Fitzgerald's youth. He was a young Midwesterner from Minnesota. Like the novel's narrator who went to Yale, he was educated at an Ivy League school, Princeton. There the 19-year-old Fitzgerald met Ginevra King, a 16-year-old socialite with whom he fell deeply in love.[14] Although Ginevra was madly in love with him, her upper-class family openly discouraged his courtship of their daughter because of his lower-class status, and her father purportedly told him that "poor boys shouldn't think of marrying rich girls".[17]

Rejected by Ginevra's family as a suitor because of his lack of financial prospects, a suicidal Fitzgerald enlisted in the United States Army amid World War I and was commissioned as a second lieutenant.[19] While awaiting deployment to the Western front where he hoped to die in combat,[19] he was stationed at Camp Sheridan in Montgomery, Alabama, where he met Zelda Sayre, a vivacious 17-year-old Southern belle. After learning that Ginevra had married wealthy Chicago businessman William "Bill" Mitchell, Fitzgerald asked Zelda to marry him.[21] Zelda agreed but postponed their marriage until he became financially successful.[23] Fitzgerald is thus similar to Jay Gatsby in that he became engaged while a military officer stationed far from home and then sought immense wealth in order to provide for the lifestyle to which his fiancée had become accustomed.[b][28]

After his success as a short-story writer and as a novelist, Fitzgerald married Zelda in New York City, and the newly-wed couple soon relocated to Long Island. Despite enjoying the exclusive Long Island milieu, Fitzgerald quietly disapproved of the extravagant parties, and the wealthy persons he encountered often disappointed him. While striving to emulate the rich, he found their privileged lifestyle to be morally disquieting.[32][33] Although Fitzgerald—like Gatsby—had always admired the rich, he nonetheless possessed a smoldering resentment towards them.[33]

Plot summary[edit]

George Wilson and his wife Myrtle live in the "valley of ashes", a refuse dump (shown in the above photograph) historically located in New York City during the 1920s. Today, the area is Flushing Meadows–Corona Park.
George Wilson and his wife Myrtle live in the "valley of ashes", a refuse dump(shown in the above photograph) historically located in New York City during the 1920s. Today, the area is Flushing Meadows–Corona Park.

In spring 1922, Nick Carraway—a Yale alumnus from the Midwest and a World War I veteran—journeys to New York City to obtain employment as a bond salesman. He rents a bungalow in the Long Island village of West Egg, next to a luxurious estate inhabited by Jay Gatsby, an enigmatic multi-millionaire who hosts dazzling soirées yet does not partake in them.

One evening, Nick dines with a distant relative, Daisy Buchanan, in the fashionable town of East Egg. Daisy is married to Tom Buchanan, formerly a Yale football star whom Nick knew during his college days. The couple has recently relocated from Chicago to a mansion directly across the bay from Gatsby's estate. There, Nick encounters Jordan Baker, an insolent flapper and golf champion who is a childhood friend of Daisy's. Jordan confides to Nick that Tom keeps a mistress, Myrtle Wilson, who brazenly telephones him at his home and who lives in the "valley of ashes", a sprawling refuse dump.[34] That evening, Nick sees Gatsby standing alone on his lawn, staring at a green light across the bay.

Days later, Nick reluctantly accompanies a drunken and agitated Tom to New York City by train. En route, they stop at a garage inhabited by mechanic George Wilson and his wife Myrtle. Myrtle joins them, and the trio proceed to a small New York apartment that Tom has rented for trysts with her. Guests arrive and a party ensues, which ends with Tom slapping Myrtle and breaking her nose after she mentions Daisy.

One morning, Nick receives a formal invitation to a party at Gatsby's mansion. Once there, Nick is embarrassed that he recognizes no one and begins drinking heavily until he encounters Jordan. While chatting with her, he is approached by a man who introduces himself as Jay Gatsby and insists that both he and Nick served in the 3rd Infantry Division during the war. Gatsby attempts to ingratiate himself with Nick and when Nick leaves the party, he notices Gatsby watching him.

In late July, Nick and Gatsby have lunch at a speakeasy. Gatsby tries impressing Nick with tales of his war heroism and his Oxford days. Afterward, Nick meets Jordan at the Plaza Hotel. Jordan reveals that Gatsby and Daisy met around 1917 when Gatsby was an officer in the American Expeditionary Forces. They fell in love, but when Gatsby was deployed overseas, Daisy reluctantly married Tom. Gatsby hopes that his newfound wealth and dazzling parties will make Daisy reconsider. Gatsby uses Nick to stage a reunion with Daisy, and the two embark upon a sexual affair.

In September, Tom discovers the affair when Daisy carelessly addresses Gatsby with unabashed intimacy in front of him. Later, at a Plaza Hotel suite, Gatsby and Tom argue about the affair. Gatsby insists Daisy declare that she never loved Tom. Daisy claims she loves Tom and Gatsby, upsetting both. Tom reveals Gatsby is a swindler whose money comes from bootlegging alcohol. Upon hearing this, Daisy chooses to stay with Tom. Tom scornfully tells Gatsby to drive her home, knowing that Daisy will never leave him.

While returning to East Egg, Gatsby and Daisy drive by Wilson's garage and their car accidentally strikes Myrtle, killing her instantly. Gatsby reveals to Nick that Daisy was driving the car, but that he intends to take the blame for the accident to protect her. Nick urges Gatsby to flee to avoid prosecution, but he refuses. After Tom tells George that Gatsby owns the car that struck Myrtle, a distraught George assumes the owner of the vehicle must be Myrtle's lover. George fatally shoots Gatsby in his mansion's swimming pool, then commits suicide.

Several days after Gatsby's murder, his father Henry Gatz arrives for the sparsely attended funeral. After Gatsby's death, Nick comes to hate New York and decides that Gatsby, Daisy, Tom, and he were all Midwesterners unsuited to Eastern life.[c]

Nick encounters Tom and initially refuses to shake his hand. Tom admits he was the one who told George that Gatsby owned the vehicle that killed Myrtle. Before returning to the Midwest, Nick returns to Gatsby's mansion and stares across the bay at the green light emanating from the end of Daisy's dock.

Major characters[edit]

  • Nick Carraway – a Yale University alumnus from the Midwest, a World War I veteran, and a newly arrived resident of West Egg, age 29 (later 30) who serves as the first-person narrator. He is Gatsby's neighbor and a bond salesman. Carraway is easy-going and optimistic, although this latter quality fades as the novel progresses. He ultimately returns to the Midwest after despairing of the decadence and indifference of the eastern United States.
  • Jay Gatsby (originally James "Jimmy" Gatz) – a young, mysterious millionaire with shady business connections (later revealed to be a bootlegger), originally from North Dakota. During World War I, when he was a young military officer stationed at the United States Army's Camp Taylor in Louisville, Kentucky, Gatsby encountered the love of his life, the debutante Daisy Buchanan. Later, after the war, he studied briefly at Trinity College, Oxford, in England. According to Fitzgerald's wife Zelda, he partly based Gatsby on their enigmatic Long Island neighbor, Max Gerlach.[37] A military veteran, Gerlach became a self-made millionaire due to his bootlegging endeavors and was fond of using the phrase "old sport" in his letters to Fitzgerald.
  • Daisy Buchanan – a shallow, self-absorbed, and young debutante and socialite from Louisville, Kentucky, identified as a flapper.[39] She is Nick's second cousin, once removed, and the wife of Tom Buchanan. Before marrying Tom, Daisy had a romantic relationship with Gatsby. Her choice between Gatsby and Tom is one of the novel's central conflicts. Fitzgerald's romance and life-long obsession with Ginevra King inspired the character of Daisy.[14][40]
  • Thomas "Tom" Buchanan – Daisy's husband, a millionaire who lives in East Egg. Tom is an imposing man of muscular build with a deep voice and arrogant demeanor. He was a football star at Yale and is a white supremacist.[42] Among other literary models,[d] Buchanan has certain parallels with William "Bill" Mitchell, the Chicago businessman who married Ginevra King.[44] Buchanan and Mitchell were both Chicagoans with an interest in polo.[44] Also, like Ginevra's father Charles King whom Fitzgerald resented, Buchanan is an imperious Yale man and polo player from Lake Forest, Illinois.
  • Jordan Baker – an amateur golfer with a sarcastic streak and an aloof attitude, and Daisy's long-time friend. She is Nick Carraway's girlfriend for most of the novel, though they grow apart towards the end. She has a shady reputation because of rumors that she had cheated in a tournament, which harmed her reputation both socially and as a golfer. Fitzgerald based Jordan on Ginevra's friend Edith Cummings, a premier amateur golfer known in the press as "The Fairway Flapper". Unlike Jordan Baker, Cummings was never suspected of cheating. The character's name is a play on the two popular automobile brands, the Jordan Motor Car Company and the Baker Motor Vehicle, both of Cleveland, Ohio, alluding to Jordan's "fast" reputation and the new freedom presented to American women, especially flappers, in the 1920s.[52]
  • George B. Wilson – a mechanic and owner of a garage. He is disliked by both his wife, Myrtle Wilson, and Tom Buchanan, who describes him as "so dumb he doesn't know he's alive". At the end of the novel, George kills Gatsby, wrongly believing he had been driving the car that killed Myrtle, and then kills himself.
  • Myrtle Wilson – George's wife and Tom Buchanan's mistress. Myrtle, who possesses a fierce vitality, is desperate to find refuge from her disappointing marriage. She is accidentally killed by Gatsby's car, as she mistakenly thinks Tom is still driving it and runs after it.

Writing and production[edit]

Photograph of Beacon Towers

The now-demolished Beacon Towers partly served as an inspiration for Gatsby's home.

Photograph of Oheka Castle

Oheka Castle was another North Shore inspiration for the novel's setting.

Fitzgerald began outlining his third novel in June 1922. He longed to produce an exquisite work that was beautiful and intricately patterned, but the troubled production of his stage playThe Vegetable repeatedly interrupted his progress. The play flopped, and Fitzgerald wrote magazine stories that winter to pay debts incurred by its production.[60] He viewed these stories as all worthless, although included among them was "Winter Dreams", which Fitzgerald described as his first attempt at the Gatsby idea. "The whole idea of Gatsby", he later explained to a friend, "is the unfairness of a poor young man not being able to marry a girl with money. This theme comes up again and again because I lived it".

In October 1922, after the birth of their only child, Frances Scott "Scottie" Fitzgerald, the Fitzgeralds moved to Great Neck, New York, on Long Island. Their neighbors in Great Neck included such newly wealthy personages as writer Ring Lardner, actor Lew Fields and comedian Ed Wynn. These figures were all considered to be nouveau riche (new rich), unlike those who came from Manhasset Neck, which sat across the bay from Great Neck—places that were home to many of New York's wealthiest established families. This real-life juxtaposition gave Fitzgerald his idea for "West Egg" and "East Egg". In the novel, Great Neck (Kings Point) became the "new money" peninsula of West Egg and Port Washington (Sands Point) became the "old money" East Egg. Several Gold Coast mansions in the area served as inspiration for Gatsby's estate including Land's End,Oheka Castle, and the since-demolished Beacon Towers.[67]

While living on Long Island, the Fitzgeralds' enigmatic neighbor was Max Gerlach.[e][37][71] Purportedly born in America to a German immigrant family,[f] Gerlach had been a major in the American Expeditionary Forces during World War I, and he later became a gentleman bootlegger who lived like a millionaire in New York. Flaunting his new wealth,[g] Gerlach threw lavish parties, never wore the same shirt twice, used the phrase "old sport", and fostered myths about himself including that he was a relation of the German Kaiser. These details about Gerlach inspired Fitzgerald in his creation of Jay Gatsby.[79]

During this same time period, the daily newspapers sensationalized the Hall–Mills murder case over many months, and the highly publicized case likely influenced the plot of Fitzgerald's novel.[80] The case involved the double-murder of a man and his lover on September 14, 1922, mere weeks before Fitzgerald arrived in Great Neck. Scholars have speculated that Fitzgerald based certain aspects of the ending of The Great Gatsby and various characterizations on this factual incident.

Inspired by the Halls–Mills case, the mysterious persona of Gerlach and the riotous parties he attended on Long Island, Fitzgerald had written 18,000 words for his novel by mid-1923 but discarded most of his new story as a false start. Some of this early draft resurfaced in the 1924 short story "Absolution".[83] In earlier drafts,[h] Daisy was originally named Ada and Nick was Dud, and the two characters had shared a previous romance prior to their reunion on Long Island. These earlier drafts were written from the viewpoint of an omniscient narrator as opposed to Nick's perspective.[87] A key difference in earlier drafts is a less complete failure of Gatsby's dream. Another difference is that the argument between Tom Buchanan and Gatsby is more balanced, although Daisy still returns to Tom.

Work on The Great Gatsby resumed in earnest in April 1924.[89] Fitzgerald decided to depart from the writing process of his previous novels and told Perkins that he was intent on creating an artistic achievement. He wished to eschew the realism of his previous two novels and to compose a creative work of sustained imagination.[91] To this end, he consciously imitated the literary styles of Joseph Conrad and Willa Cather. He was particularly influenced by Cather's 1923 work, A Lost Lady, which features a wealthy married socialite pursued by a variety of romantic suitors and who symbolically embodies the America dream.[94] He later wrote a letter to Cather apologizing for any unintentional plagiarism. During this period of revisions, Scott saw and was influenced by early sketches for the book's cover art.[96] Soon after this burst of effort, work slowed while the Fitzgeralds moved to the French Riviera, where a marital crisis soon developed.[i]

Despite his ongoing marital tension, Fitzgerald continued to write steadily and submitted a near-final version of the manuscript to his editor, Maxwell Perkins, on October 27. Perkins informed him in a November letter that Gatsby was too vague as a character and that his wealth and business, respectively, needed a convincing explanation. Fitzgerald thanked Perkins for his detailed criticisms and claimed that such feedback would enable him to perfect the manuscript. Having relocated with his wife to Rome, Fitzgerald made revisions to the manuscript throughout the winter.

Content after a few rounds of revision, Fitzgerald submitted the final version in February 1925.[103] Fitzgerald's alterations included extensive revisions of the sixth and eighth chapters. He declined an offer of $10,000 for the serial rights to the book so that it could be published sooner. He received a $3,939 advance in 1923 and would receive $1,981.25 upon publication.[106]

Alternative titles[edit]

Photographic of Maxwell Perkins sitting at a desk
Fitzgerald's editor, Maxwell Perkins, convinced the author to abandon his original title of Trimalchio in West Eggin favor of The Great Gatsby.

Fitzgerald had difficulty choosing a title for his novel and entertained many choices before reluctantly deciding on The Great Gatsby,[107] a title inspired by Alain-Fournier's Le Grand Meaulnes. Previously he had shifted between Among Ash Heaps and Millionaires,[107]Trimalchio,[107]Trimalchio in West Egg,[109]On the Road to West Egg,[109]Under the Red, White, and Blue,[107]The Gold-Hatted Gatsby,[109] and The High-Bouncing Lover.[109] The titles The Gold-Hatted Gatsby and The High-Bouncing Lover came from Fitzgerald's epigraph for the novel, one which he wrote himself under the pen name of Thomas Parke D'Invilliers.

Fitzgerald initially preferred titles referencing Trimalchio,[j] the crude upstart in Petronius's Satyricon, and even refers to Gatsby as Trimalchio once in the novel.[112] Unlike Gatsby's spectacular parties, Trimalchio participated in the orgies he hosted but, according to literary critic Tony Tanner, there are subtle similarities between the two characters. By November 1924, Fitzgerald wrote to Perkins that he had settled upon the title of Trimalchio in West Egg.

Disliking Fitzgerald's chosen title of Trimalchio in West Egg, editor Max Perkins persuaded him that the reference was too obscure and that people would be unable to pronounce it. Zelda and Perkins both expressed their preference for The Great Gatsby, and the next month Fitzgerald agreed. A month before publication, after a final review of the proofs, he asked if it would be possible to re-title it Trimalchio or Gold-Hatted Gatsby, but Perkins advised against it. On March 19, 1925, Fitzgerald expressed enthusiasm for the title Under the Red, White, and Blue, but it was too late to change it at that stage. The novel was published as The Great Gatsby on April 10, 1925. Fitzgerald believed the book's final title to be merely acceptable and often expressed his ambivalence with the name.

Cover art[edit]

The Great Gatsby cover art drafts
The Great Gatsby 1925 cover without the title or author superimposed.

Drafts of the cover by artist Francis Cugat juxtaposed with the final version. In one draft (first), a single eye loomed over Long Island Sound. In a subsequent draft (second), Cugat expanded upon this concept to feature two eyes gazing over the New York cityscape. In the final cover (third), the shadowy cityscape was replaced by carnival lights evoking Coney Island.

The artwork for the first edition of The Great Gatsby is among the most celebrated in American literature and represents a unique instance in literary history in which a novel's commissioned artwork directly influenced the composition of the text. Rendered in the contemporary Art Deco visual style, the artwork depicts the disembodied face of a Jazz Age flapper with celestial eyes and rouged mouth over a dark blue skyline. A little-known Barcelonan painter named Francis Cugat—born Francisco Coradal-Cougat—was commissioned by an unknown individual in Scribner's art department to illustrate the cover while Fitzgerald was composing the novel.

In a preliminary sketch, Cugat drew a concept of a dismal gray landscape inspired by Fitzgerald's original title for the novel, Among Ash Heaps and Millionaires. Discarding this gloomy concept, Cugat next drew a divergent study which became the prefiguration to the final cover: A pencil and crayon drawing of a flapper's half-hidden visage over Long Island Sound with scarlet lips, one celestial eye, and a single diagonal tear. Expanding upon this study, his subsequent drawing featured two bright eyes looming over a shadowy New York cityscape. In later iterations, Cugat replaced the shadowy cityscape with dazzling carnival lights evoking a Ferris wheel and likely referencing the glittering amusement park at New York's Coney Island. Cugat affixed reclining nudes within the flapper's irises and added a green tint to the streaming tear. Cugat's final cover,[k] which Max Perkins hailed as a masterpiece, was the only work he completed for Scribner's and the only book cover he ever designed.

Although Fitzgerald likely never saw the final gouache painting prior to the novel's publication,[133] Cugat's preparatory drafts influenced his writing.[96] Upon viewing Cugat's drafts before sailing for France in April–May 1924,[96] Fitzgerald was so enamored that he later told editor Max Perkins that he had incorporated Cugat's imagery into the novel. This statement has led many to analyze interrelations between Cugat's art and Fitzgerald's text. One popular interpretation is that the celestial eyes are reminiscent of those of fictional optometrist T. J. Eckleburg depicted on a faded commercial billboard near George Wilson's auto repair shop.[135] Author Ernest Hemingway supported this latter interpretation and claimed that Fitzgerald had told him the cover referred to a billboard in the valley of the ashes. Although this passage has some resemblance to the imagery, a closer explanation can be found in Fitzgerald's explicit description of Daisy Buchanan as the "girl whose disembodied face floated along the dark cornices and blinding signs".

Critical reception[edit]

Contemporary reviews[edit]

Charles Scribner's Sons published The Great Gatsby on April 10, 1925. Fitzgerald cabled Perkins the day after publication to monitor reviews: "Any news?" "Sales situation doubtful [but] excellent reviews", read a telegram from Perkins on April 20.[138] Fitzgerald responded on April 24, saying the cable dispirited him, closing the letter with "Yours in great depression".[138] Fitzgerald soon received letters from contemporaries Willa Cather, Edith Wharton, and poet T. S. Eliot praising the novel. Although gratified by such correspondence, Fitzgerald sought public acclaim from professional critics.[140]

Photographic portrait of H.L. Mencken
Although he praised the novel's style, H.L. Menckencriticized the plot as highly improbable—a criticism that Fitzgerald particularly resented.

The Great Gatsby received generally favorable reviews from literary critics of the day.[141] Edwin Clark of The New York Times felt the novel was a mystical and glamorous tale of the Jazz Age. Similarly, Lillian C. Ford of the Los Angeles Times hailed the novel as a revelatory work of art that "leaves the reader in a mood of chastened wonder".The New York Post described Fitzgerald's prose style as scintillating and genuinely brilliant. The New York Herald Tribune was less impressed, referring to The Great Gatsby as "a literary lemon meringue" that nonetheless "contains some of the nicest little touches of contemporary observation you could imagine—so light, so delicate, so sharp". In The Chicago Daily Tribune, H. L. Mencken judged the work's plot to be highly improbable, although he praised the writing as elegant and the "careful and brilliant finish".[146]

Several reviewers felt the novel left much to be desired following Fitzgerald's previous works and criticized him accordingly. Harvey Eagleton of The Dallas Morning News predicted that the novel signaled the end of Fitzgerald's artistic success. Ralph Coghlan of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch dismissed the work as an inconsequential performance by a once-promising author who had grown bored and cynical. Ruth Snyder of New York Evening World lambasted the book's style as painfully forced and declared the editors of her newspaper were "quite convinced after reading The Great Gatsby that Mr. Fitzgerald is not one of the great American writers of today". John McClure of The Times-Picayune insisted the plot was implausible and the book itself seemed raw in its construction.

After reading these reviews, Fitzgerald believed that many critics misunderstood the novel. He despaired that "of all the reviews, even the most enthusiastic, not one had the slightest idea what the book was about". In particular, Fitzgerald resented criticisms of the novel's plot as implausible since he had never intended for the story to be realistic. Instead, he crafted the work to be a romanticized depiction that was largely scenic and symbolic.[152] According to his friend John Peale Bishop, Fitzgerald further resented the fact that critics failed to perceive the many parallels between the author's life and the character of Jay Gatsby; in particular, that both created a mythical version of themselves and attempted to live up to this legend. Dispirited by critics failing to understand the novel, Fitzgerald remained hopeful that the novel would at least be a commercial success, perhaps selling as many as 75,000 copies.

To Fitzgerald's great disappointment, Gatsby was a commercial failure in comparison with his previous efforts, This Side of Paradise (1920) and The Beautiful and Damned (1922). By October, the book had sold fewer than 20,000 copies. Although the novel went through two initial printings, many copies remained unsold years later. Fitzgerald attributed the poor sales to the fact that women tended to be the primary audience for novels during this time, and Gatsby did not contain an admirable female character. According to his ledger, he earned only $2,000 from the book.[156] Although Owen Davis' 1926 stage adaptation and the Paramount-issued silent film version brought in money for the author, Fitzgerald lamented that the novel fell far short of the success he had hoped for and would not bring him recognition as a serious novelist in the public eye. With the onset of the Great Depression, The Great Gatsby was regarded as little more than a nostalgic period piece. By the time Fitzgerald died in 1940, the novel had fallen into near obscurity.

Revival and reassessment[edit]

In 1940, Fitzgerald suffered a third and fatal heart attack and died believing his work forgotten.[158] His obituary in The New York Times hailed him as a brilliant novelist and cited Gatsby as his greatest work. In the wake of Fitzgerald's death, a strong appreciation for the book gradually developed in writers' circles. Future authors Budd Schulberg and Edward Newhouse were deeply affected by it, and John O'Hara acknowledged its influence on his work.[160] By the time that Gatsby was republished in Edmund Wilson's edition of The Last Tycoon in 1941, the prevailing opinion in writers' circles deemed the novel to be an enduring work of fiction.

In the spring of 1942, mere months after the United States' entrance into World War II, an association of publishing executives created the Council on Books in Wartime with the stated purpose of distributing paperback Armed Services Editions books to combat troops. The Great Gatsby was one of them. Within the next several years, 155,000 copies of Gatsby were distributed to U.S. soldiers overseas,[162] and the book proved popular among beleaguered troops, according to the Saturday Evening Post's contemporary report.

By 1944, a full-scale Fitzgerald revival had occurred.[164] Full-length scholarly articles on Fitzgerald's works were being published in periodicals and, by the following year, the earlier consensus among professional critics that The Great Gatsby was merely a sensational story or a nostalgic period piece had effectively vanished.[165] The tireless promotional efforts of literary critic Edmund Wilson, who was Fitzgerald's Princeton classmate and his close friend, led this Fitzgerald revival. In 1951, three years after Zelda's death in a hospital fire, Professor Arthur Mizener of Cornell University published The Far Side of Paradise, the first biography of Fitzgerald. Mizener's best-selling biography emphasized The Great Gatsby's positive reception by literary critics, which may have further influenced public opinion and renewed interest in it.

By 1960—thirty-five years after the novel's original publication—the book was steadily selling 100,000 copies per year. Renewed interest in it led The New York Times editorialist Mizener to proclaim the novel was a masterwork of 20th-century American literature. By 1974, The Great Gatsby had attained its status as a literary masterwork and was deemed a contender for the title of the "Great American Novel".[170] By the mid-2000s, many literary critics considered The Great Gatsby to be one of the greatest novels ever written,[171] and the work was part of the assigned curricula in the near majority of U.S. high schools. As of early 2020, The Great Gatsby had sold almost 30 million copies worldwide and continues to sell an additional 500,000 copies annually. Numerous foreign editions of the novel have been published, and the text has been translated into 42 different languages. The work is Scribner's most popular title; in 2013, the e-book alone sold 185,000 copies. The novel's U.S. copyright expired on January 1, 2021, when all works published in 1925 entered the public domain.[175]

Critical analysis[edit]

Major themes[edit]

The American dream[edit]

Following the novel's revival, later critical writings on The Great Gatsby focused on Fitzgerald's disillusionment with the American dream in the hedonistic Jazz Age,[176] a name for the era which Fitzgerald claimed to have coined.[177] In 1970, scholar Roger L. Pearson asserted that Fitzgerald's work—more so than other twentieth century novels—is especially linked with this conceptualization of the American dream. Pearson traced the literary origins of this dream to Colonial America. The dream is the belief that every individual, regardless of their origins, may seek and achieve their desired goals, "be they political, monetary, or social. It is the literary expression of the concept of America: The land of opportunity".

However, Pearson noted that Fitzgerald's particular treatment of this theme is devoid of the discernible optimism in the writings of earlier American authors. He suggests Gatsby serves as a false prophet of the American dream, and pursuing the dream only results in dissatisfaction for those who chase it, owing to its unattainability. In this analytical context, the green light emanating across the Long Island Sound from Gatsby's house is frequently interpreted as a symbol of Gatsby's unrealizable goal to win Daisy and, consequently, to achieve the American dream.

Class permanence[edit]

Scholars and writers commonly ascribe Gatsby's inability to achieve the American dream to entrenched class disparities in American society.[181] The novel underscores the limits of the American lower class to transcend their station of birth. Scholar Sarah Churchwell contends that Fitzgerald's novel is a tale of class warfare in a status-obsessed country that refuses to acknowledge publicly it even has a class system.

Although scholars posit different explanations for the continuation of class differences in the United States, there is a consensus regarding the novel's message in conveying its underlying permanence.[182] Although Gatsby's fundamental conflict occurs between entrenched sources of socio-economic power and upstarts like Gatsby who threaten their interests, Fitzgerald's novel shows that a class permanence persists despite the country's capitalist economy that prizes innovation and adaptability. Dianne Bechtel argues Fitzgerald plotted the novel to illustrate that class transcends wealth in America. Even if the poorer Americans become rich, they remain inferior to those Americans with "old money". Consequently, Gatsby and other characters in the novel are trapped in a rigid American class system.

Gender relations[edit]

Besides exploring the difficulties of achieving the American dream, The Great Gatsby explores societal gender expectations during the Jazz Age. The character of Daisy Buchanan has been identified specifically as personifying the emerging cultural archetype of the flapper.[39] Flappers were typically young, modern women who bobbed their hair and wore short skirts.[187] They also drank alcohol and had premarital sex.[189][7]

Despite the newfound societal freedoms attained by flappers in the 1920s, Fitzgerald's work critically examines the continued limitations upon women's agency during this period. In this context, although early critics viewed the character of Daisy to be a "monster of bitchery", later scholars such as Leland S. Person Jr. asserted that Daisy's character exemplifies the marginalization of women in the elite social environment that Fitzgerald depicts.[193]

Writing in 1978, Person noted Daisy is more of a hapless victim than a manipulative victimizer. She is the target first of Tom's callous domination and next of Gatsby's dehumanizing adoration. She involuntarily becomes the holy grail at the center of Gatsby's unrealistic quest to be steadfast to a youthful concept of himself. The ensuing contest of wills between Tom and Gatsby reduces Daisy to a trophy wife whose sole existence is to augment her possessor's socio-economic success.

As an upper-class white woman living in East Egg during this time period, Daisy must adhere to societal expectations and gender norms such as actively fulfilling the roles of dutiful wife, nurturing mother, and charming socialite. Many of Daisy's choices—ultimately culminating in the fatal car crash and misery for all those involved—can be partly attributed to her prescribed role as a "beautiful little fool" who is reliant on her husband for financial and societal security.[l] Her decision to remain with her husband, despite her feelings for Gatsby, is because of the security that her marriage to Tom Buchanan provides.

Race and displacement[edit]

Many scholars have analyzed the novel's treatment of race and displacement; in particular, a perceived threat posed by newer immigrants to older Americans, triggering concerns over a loss of socio-economic status.[198] In one instance, Tom Buchanan—the novel's antagonist—claims that he, Nick, and Jordan are racially superior Nordics. Tom decries immigration and advocates white supremacy.[199] A fictional book alluded to by Tom, Goddard's The Rise of the Colored Empires, is a parody by Fitzgerald of Lothrop Stoddard's The Rising Tide of Color, a 1920s bestseller.[200] Stoddard warned that immigration would alter America's racial composition and destroy the country.

Analyzing these elements, literary theoristWalter Benn Michaels contends that Fitzgerald's novel reflects a historical period in American literature characterized by fears over the influx of Southern and Eastern European immigrants whose "otherness" challenged Americans' sense of national identity.[202] Such anxieties were more salient in national discourse than the societal consequences of World War I,[204] and the defining question of the period was who constituted "a real American".

In this context of immigration and displacement, Tom's hostility towards Gatsby, who is the embodiment of "latest America", has been interpreted as partly embodying status anxieties of the time involving anti-immigrant sentiment. Gatsby—whom Tom belittles as "Mr. Nobody from Nowhere"[207]—functions as a cipher because of his obscure origins, his unclear ethno-religious identity and his indeterminate class status. Although his ethnicity is vague, his last name Gatz and his father's adherence to the Lutheran religion indicate his family are recent German immigrants. This would preclude them from the coveted status of Old Stock Americans. Consequently, Gatsby's socio-economic ascent is deemed a threat not only due to his status as nouveau riche, but because he is perceived as an outsider.

Because of such themes, The Great Gatsby captures the perennial American experience as it is a story about change and those who resist it—whether such change comes in the form of a new wave of immigrants, the nouveau riche, or successful minorities. Since Americans living in the 1920s to the present are largely defined by their fluctuating socio-economic circumstances and must navigate a society with entrenched racial and ethnic prejudices, Fitzgerald's depiction of resultant status anxieties and social conflict has been highlighted by scholars as still enduringly relevant nearly a hundred years after the novel's publication.[211]

Sexuality and identity[edit]

Questions regarding the sexuality of various characters in the novel have been raised for decades and—augmented by biographical details about the author—have given rise to queer readings. During his lifetime, Fitzgerald's sexuality became a subject of debate among his friends and acquaintances.[213][214] As a youth, Fitzgerald had a close relationship with Father Sigourney Fay,[216] a possibly gay Catholic priest,[217][218] and Fitzgerald later used his last name for the idealized romantic character of Daisy Fay. After college, Fitzgerald cross-dressed during outings in Minnesota.[220] Years later, while drafting The Great Gatsby, rumors dogged Fitzgerald among the American expat community in Paris that he was gay.[214] Soon after, Fitzgerald's wife Zelda Fitzgerald likewise doubted his heterosexuality and asserted that he was a closeted homosexual. She publicly belittled him with homophobic slurs, and she alleged that Fitzgerald and fellow writer Ernest Hemingway engaged in homosexual relations.[224] These incidents strained the Fitzgeralds' marriage at the time of the novel's publication.

Although Fitzgerald's sexuality is a subject of scholarly debate,[m] such biographical details lent credence to critical interpretations that his fictional characters are either gay or bisexual surrogates.[n][229] As early as 1945, critics such as Lionel Trilling noted that characters in The Great Gatsby, such as Jordan Baker, were implied to be "vaguely homosexual", and, in 1960, writer Otto Friedrich commented upon the ease of examining the thwarted relations depicted in Fitzgerald's fiction through a queer lens. In recent decades, scholarship has focused sharply on the sexuality of Nick Carraway.[233] In one instance in the novel, Carraway departs a drunken orgy with a "pale, feminine" man named Mr. McKee and—following suggestive ellipses—Nick next finds himself standing beside a bed while McKee sits between the sheets clad only in his underwear. Such scenes have led scholars to describe Nick as possessing an overt queerness and prompted analyses about his emotional attachment to Jay Gatsby. For these reasons, the novel has been described as an exploration of sexual identity during a historical era typified by the societal transition towards modernity.[237][238]

Technology and environment[edit]

Technological and environmental criticisms of Gatsby seek to place the novel and its characters in a broader historical context.[239] In 1964, Leo Marx argued in The Machine in the Garden that Fitzgerald's work evinces a tension between a complex pastoral ideal of a bygone America and the societal transformations caused by industrialization and machine technology. Specifically, the valley of the ashes represents a man-made wasteland which is a byproduct of the industrialization that has made Gatsby's booming lifestyle, including his automobile, possible. Marx argues that Fitzgerald, via Nick, expresses a pastoral longing typical of other 1920s American writers like William Faulkner and Ernest Hemingway. Although such writers cherish the pastoral ideal, they accept that technological progress has deprived this ideal of nearly all meaning.[243] In this context, Nick's repudiation of the eastern United States represents a futile attempt to withdraw into nature.[243] Yet, as Fitzgerald's work shows, any technological demarcation between the eastern and western United States has vanished,[c] and one cannot escape into a pastoral past.[243]

In more recent years, scholars have argued that the voracious pursuit of wealth as criticized in Fitzgerald's novel offers a warning about the perils of environmental destruction in pursuit of self-interest.[246] According to Kyle Keeler, Gatsby's quest for greater status manifests as self-centered, anthropocentric resource acquisition.[246] Inspired by the predatory mining practices of his fictional mentor Dan Cody, Gatsby participates in extensive deforestation amid World War I and then undertakes bootlegging activities reliant upon exploiting South American agriculture.[246] Gatsby conveniently ignores the wasteful devastation of the valley of ashes to pursue a consumerist lifestyle and exacerbates the wealth gap that became increasingly salient in 1920s America.[246] For these reasons, Keeler argues that—while Gatsby's socioeconomic ascent and self-transformation depend upon these very factors—each one is nonetheless partially responsible for the ongoing ecological crisis.[246]

Antisemitism[edit]

The Great Gatsby has been accused of antisemitism because of its use of Jewish stereotypes. One of the novel's supporting characters is Meyer Wolfsheim,[o] a Jewish friend and mentor of Gatsby's. A corrupt profiteer who assists Gatsby's bootlegging operations and who fixed the 1919 World Series, he appears only twice in the novel, the second time refusing to attend Gatsby's funeral. Fitzgerald describes Wolfsheim as "a small, flat-nosed Jew", with "tiny eyes" and "two fine growths of hair" in his nostrils. Evoking ethnic stereotypes regarding the Jewish nose, he describes Wolfsheim's nose as "expressive", "tragic", and able to "flash ... indignantly". The fictional character of Wolfsheim is an allusion to real-life Jewish gambler Arnold Rothstein,[251] a notorious New York crime kingpin whom Fitzgerald met once in undetermined circumstances.[252] Rothstein was blamed for match fixing in the Black Sox Scandal that tainted the 1919 World Series.

Wolfsheim has been interpreted as representing the Jewish miser stereotype. Richard Levy, author of Antisemitism: A Historical Encyclopedia of Prejudice and Persecution, claims that Wolfsheim serves to link Jewishness with corruption. In a 1947 article for Commentary, Milton Hindus, an assistant professor of humanities at the University of Chicago, stated that while he believed the book was a superb literary achievement, Wolfsheim was its most abrasive character, and the work contains an antisemitic undertone. However, Hindus argued the Jewish stereotypes displayed by Wolfsheim were typical of the time when the novel was written and set and that its antisemitism was of the "habitual, customary, 'harmless,' unpolitical variety".[255] A 2015 article by essayist Arthur Krystal agreed with Hindus' assessment that Fitzgerald's use of Jewish caricatures was not driven by malice and merely reflected commonly held beliefs of his time. He notes the accounts of Frances Kroll, a Jewish woman and secretary to Fitzgerald, who claimed that Fitzgerald was hurt by accusations of antisemitism and responded to critiques of Wolfsheim by claiming he merely "fulfilled a function in the story and had nothing to do with race or religion".

Adaptations[edit]

Stage[edit]

Gatsby has been adapted for the stage multiple times since its publication. The first known stage adaptation was by American dramatist Owen Davis, which subsequently became the 1926 film version. The play, directed by George Cukor, opened on Broadway on February 2, 1926, and had 112 curtain calls. A successful tour later in the year included performances in Chicago, August 1 through October 2. More recently, The New York Metropolitan Opera commissioned John Harbison to compose an operatic treatment of the novel to commemorate the 25th anniversary of James Levine's debut. The work, called The Great Gatsby, premiered on December 20, 1999. In July 2006, Simon Levy's stage adaptation, directed by David Esbjornson, premiered at the Guthrie Theater to commemorate the opening of its new theater. In 2010, critic Ben Brantley of The New York Times highly praised the debut of Gatz, an Off-Broadway production by Elevator Repair Service. The novel has also been revised for ballet performances. In 2009, BalletMet premiered a version at the Capitol Theatre in Columbus, Ohio. In 2010, The Washington Ballet premiered a version at the Kennedy Center. The show received an encore run the following year.[262]

Film[edit]

The first movie version of the novel debuted in 1926. Itself a version of Owen Davis's Broadway play, it was directed by Herbert Brenon and starred Warner Baxter, Lois Wilson and William Powell. It is a famous example of a lost film. Reviews suggest it may have been the most faithful adaptation of the novel, but a trailer of the film at the National Archives is all that is known to exist. Reportedly, Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda loathed the silent version. Zelda wrote to an acquaintance that the film was "rotten". She and Scott left the cinema midway through the film.[264]

Following the 1926 movie was 1949's The Great Gatsby, directed by Elliott Nugent and starring Alan Ladd, Betty Field and Macdonald Carey.[265] Twenty-five years later in 1974, The Great Gatsby appeared onscreen again. It was directed by Jack Clayton and starred Robert Redford as Gatsby, Mia Farrow as Daisy, and Sam Waterston as Nick Carraway.[265] Most recently, The Great Gatsby was directed by Baz Luhrmann in 2013 and starred Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby, Carey Mulligan as Daisy and Tobey Maguire as Nick.[264]

In 2021, visual effects company DNEG announced they would be producing an animated film adaptation of the novel directed by William Joyce and written by Brian Selznick.

Television[edit]

Gatsby has been recast multiple times as a short-form television movie. The first was in 1955 as an NBC episode for Robert Montgomery Presents starring Robert Montgomery, Phyllis Kirk, and Lee Bowman. The episode was directed by Alvin Sapinsley. In 1958, CBS filmed another adaptation as an episode of Playhouse 90, also titled The Great Gatsby, which was directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and starred Robert Ryan, Jeanne Crain and Rod Taylor. Most recently, the novel was adapted as an A&E movie in 2000. The Great Gatsby was directed by Robert Markowitz and starred Toby Stephens as Gatsby, Mira Sorvino as Daisy, and Paul Rudd as Nick.

Other media[edit]

The novel has been adapted in other media formats such as radio episodes and video games. The first radio episode was a 1950 half-hour-long adaptation for CBS' Family Hour of Stars starring Kirk Douglas as Gatsby. The novel was read aloud by the BBC World Service in ten parts in 2008. In a 2012 BBC Radio 4 broadcast, The Great Gatsby took the form of a Classic Serial dramatization. It was created by dramatist Robert Forrest. In 2010, Oberon Media released a casual hidden object game called Classic Adventures: The Great Gatsby, in 2011, developer Charlie Hoey and editor Pete Smith created an 8-bit-style online game of The Great Gatsby called The Great Gatsby for NES, and in 2013, Slate released a short symbolic adaptation called The Great Gatsby: The Video Game.

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^Historian Jeff Nilsson described F. Scott Fitzgerald as the poet laureate of the Jazz Age, "the most raucous, gaudy era in U.S. history".
  2. ^As a Southern belle, Zelda Sayre's wealthy family employed half-a-dozen domestic servants, many of whom were African-American. She was unaccustomed to domestic labor of any kind and delegated all tasks to her servants.[26]
  3. ^ abThroughout the novel, Fitzgerald identifies his native region of the Midwest—those "towns beyond the Ohio"—with the perceived virtuousness and rustic simplicity of the American West and as culturally distinct from the decadent values of the eastern United States.[245]
  4. ^Another possible model for Tom Buchanan was Southern polo champion and aviator Tommy Hitchcock Jr. whom Fitzgerald met at Long Island parties while in New York.
  5. ^Primary sources such as Zelda Fitzgerald and F. Scott Fitzgerald's friend Edmund Wilson both stated that Max Gerlach was a neighbor.[37][68] Scholars have yet to find surviving property records for a Long Island residence with Gerlach's name. However, there are likely "gaps in the record of his addresses", and an accurate reconstruction of Gerlach's life and whereabouts is greatly hindered "by the imperfect state of relevant documentation".
  6. ^In a 2009 book, scholar Horst Kruse asserts that Max Gerlach was born in or near Berlin, Germany, and, as a young boy, he immigrated with his German parents to America.
  7. ^With the end of prohibition and the onset of the Great Depression, Max Gerlach lost his wealth. Living in poverty, he attempted suicide by shooting himself in the head in 1939.[74]
  8. ^Only two pages of the first draft of The Great Gatsby survive. Fitzgerald enclosed them with a letter to Willa Cather in 1925. They are now in the Fitzgerald Papers at Princeton University.
  9. ^In Cannes, France, while Fitzgerald worked on the novel, his wife Zelda was romanced by French naval aviator Edouard Jozan and asked for a divorce.[98]
  10. ^In 2002, over six decades after Fitzgerald's death, his earlier draft of the now-famous novel was published under the title Trimalchio: An Early Version of The Great Gatsby.
  11. ^Many years after The Great Gatsby's publication, Francis Cugat's original painting for the book cover was presumed forever lost until it was found in a trash can at Scribner's and donated to the Princeton University Libraries for its Graphic Arts Collection.
  12. ^Daisy's statement that she hopes her daughter will be a "beautiful little fool" was said by Zelda Fitzgerald when their child was born on October 26, 1921, in a St. Paul hospital.[196]
  13. ^Fessenden (2005) argues that Fitzgerald struggled with his sexual orientation. In contrast, Bruccoli (2002) insists that "anyone can be called a latent homosexual, but there is no evidence that Fitzgerald was ever involved in a homosexual attachment".
  14. ^Scholars have focused on Fitzgerald's statement in a letter that his mind was "half feminine". In 1935, Fitzgerald wrote to Laura Guthrie: "I don't know what it is in me or that comes to me when I start to write. I am half feminine—at least my mind is".
  15. ^The spelling "Wolfshiem" appears throughout Fitzgerald's original manuscript, while "Wolfsheim" was introduced by editor Edmund Wilson in the second edition. This appears in later Scribner's editions.

Citations[edit]

  1. ^Fitzgerald 1945, p. 16, "Echoes of the Jazz Age"
  2. ^ abFitzgerald 1945, p. 18, "Echoes of the Jazz Age"
  3. ^Fitzgerald 1945, p. 15, "Echoes of the Jazz Age": "Scarcely had the staider citizens of the republic caught their breaths when the wildest of all generations, the generation which had been adolescent during the confusion of the [Great] War, brusquely shouldered my contemporaries out of the way and danced into the limelight. This was the generation whose girls dramatized themselves as flappers".
  4. ^Fitzgerald 1945, p. 18, "Echoes of the Jazz Age"
  5. ^Donahue 2013a
  6. ^ abFitzgerald 1945, pp. 14–15, "Echoes of the Jazz Age": "Unchaperoned young people of the smaller cities had discovered the mobile privacy of that automobile given to young Bill at sixteen to make him 'self-reliant'. At first petting was a desperate adventure even under such favorable conditions, but presently confidences were exchanged and the old commandment broke down".
  7. ^Donahue 2013a; Gross 1998, p. 167
  8. ^Fitzgerald 1945, p. 15, "Echoes of the Jazz Age"
  9. ^Fitzgerald 1945, pp. 13–22: Fitzgerald documented the Jazz Age and his life's relation to the era in his essay, "Echoes of the Jazz Age" which was published in the essay collection The Crack-Up.
  10. ^ abSmith 2003: Fitzgerald later confided to his daughter that Ginevra King "was the first girl I ever loved" and that he "faithfully avoided seeing her" to "keep the illusion perfect".
  11. ^Smith 2003: "That August Fitzgerald visited Ginevra in Lake Forest, Ill. Afterward he wrote in his ledger foreboding words, spoken to him perhaps by Ginevra's father, 'Poor boys shouldn't think of marrying rich girls'".
  12. ^ abBruccoli 2002, pp. 80, 82. Fitzgerald wished to be killed in battle, and he hoped that his novel would become a great success in the wake of his death.
  13. ^West 2005, p. 73; Bruccoli 2002, pp. 86, 91
  14. ^Mizener 1965, pp. 85, 89, 90: "Zelda would question whether he was ever going to make enough money for them to marry", and Fitzgerald was compelled to prove that "he was rich enough for her".
  15. ^Turnbull 1962, p. 111: "Zelda was no housekeeper. Sketchy about ordering meals, she completely ignored the laundry".
  16. ^Mizener 1965, p. 87: "Fame and fortune did not seem to be materializing on schedule for Fitzgerald, and Zelda was fretting her time away in Montgomery wondering if she ought not to marry one of her more eligible and financially better equipped admirers".
  17. ^Mizener 1965, p. 140: Although Fitzgerald strove "to become member of the community of the rich, to live from day to day as they did, to share their interests and tastes", he found such a privileged lifestyle to be morally disquieting.
  18. ^ abMizener 1965, p. 141: Fitzgerald "admired deeply the rich" and yet his wealthy friends often disappointed or repulsed him. Consequently, he harbored "the smouldering hatred of a peasant" towards the wealthy and their milieu.
  19. ^Lask 1971: The valley of ashes was a landfill in Flushing Meadows, Queens. "In those empty spaces and graying heaps, part of which was known as the Corona Dumps, Fitzgerald found his perfect image for the callous and brutal betrayal of the incurably innocent Gatsby". Flushing Meadows was drained and became the location of the 1939 World's Fair.
  20. ^ abcBruccoli 2002, p. 178: "Jay Gatsby was inspired in part by a local figure, Max Gerlach. Near the end of her life Zelda Fitzgerald said that Gatsby was based on 'a neighbor named Von Guerlach or something who was said to be General Pershing's nephew and was in trouble over bootlegging'".
  21. ^ abConor 2004, p. 301: "Fitzgerald's literary creation Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby was identified with the type of the flapper. Her pictorial counterpart was drawn by the American cartoonist John Held Jr., whose images of party-going flappers who petted in cars frequented the cover of the American magazine Life during the 1920s".
  22. ^Corrigan 2014, p. 58: "Because she's the one who got away, Ginevra—even more than Zelda—is the love who lodged like an irritant in Fitzgerald's imagination, producing the literary pearl that is Daisy Buchanan".
  23. ^Slater 1973, p. 54; Bruccoli 2000, pp. 9–11, 246; Baker 2016
  24. ^ abBruccoli 2000, pp. 9–11, 246; Bruccoli 2002, p. 86; West 2005, pp. 66–70
  25. ^Fitzgerald 2006, p. 95; Fitzgerald 1997, p. 184
  26. ^Curnutt 2004, p. 58; Bruccoli 2002, p. 185
  27. ^Randall 2003, pp. 275–77.
  28. ^Kruse 2014, pp. 13–14: Biographer Arthur Mizener wrote in a January 1951 letter to Max Gerlach that "Edmund Wilson, the literary critic, told me that Fitzgerald came to his house, apparently from yours [Gerlach's], and told him with great fascination about the life you were leading. Naturally, it fascinated him as all splendor did".
  29. ^Kruse 2002, p. 51
  30. ^Bruccoli 2002, p. 178; Kruse 2002, p. 47–48; Kruse 2014, p. 15
  31. ^Kruse 2002, pp. 45–83; Bruccoli 2002, p. 178
  32. ^Lopate 2014; Churchwell 2013a, pp. 1–9
  33. ^Bruccoli 2000, pp. 53–54; Eble 1974, p. 37; Haglund 2013
  34. ^Bruccoli 2002, p. 178; Bruccoli 1978, p. 176
  35. ^Bruccoli 2002, p. 190: Fitzgerald wrote in his private ledger: "Out of woods at last and starting novel".
  36. ^Flanagan 2000; Leader 2000, pp. 13–15
  37. ^Harvey 1995, p. 76: "Marian Forrester, then, represents the American Dream boldly focused on self, almost fully disengaged from the morals and ethics to which it had been tied in the nineteenth century".
  38. ^ abcScribner 1992, pp. 145–46: "Since there were at most a couple of weeks between the commission and Fitzgerald's departure for France, it is likely that what he had seen—and "written into the book"—was one or more of Cugat's preparatory sketches which were probably shown to him at Scribners before he set sail".
  39. ^Bruccoli 2002, p. 195; Milford 1970, p. 112; Howell 2013
  40. ^Bruccoli 2000, pp. 54–56; Bruccoli 2002, p. 215
  41. ^F. Scott Fitzgerald's ledger 1919–1938; Zuckerman 2013
  42. ^ abcdMizener 1965, p. 185; Bruccoli 2002, pp. 206–07
  43. ^ abcdVanderbilt 1999, p. 96.
  44. ^Fitzgerald 1991, p. 88, Chapter 7, opening sentence: "It was when curiosity about Gatsby was at its highest that the lights in his house failed to go on one Saturday night—and, as obscurely as it had begun, his career as Trimalchio was over".
Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Great_Gatsby

The action of takes place along a corridor stretching from New York City to the suburbs known as West and East Egg. West and East Egg serve as stand-ins for the real-life locations of two peninsulas along the northern shore of Long Island. Midway between the Eggs and Manhattan lies the “valley of ashes,” where Myrtle and George Wilson have a run-down garage. This corridor between New York and the suburbs encompasses the full range of social class. Whereas the valley of ashes is a place of evident poverty, both the city and the two suburbs represent bastions of affluence. Nick describes the profound optimism he feels when arriving in the city by train: “The city seen from the Queensboro Bridge is always the city seen for the first time, in its first wild promise of all the mystery and the beauty in the world.” He goes on to assert, “Anything can happen now that we’ve slid over this bridge.” Yet for all that New York appears full of possibility, Nick often finds his actual experience there sad, as when, in Chapter 3, he observes “young clerks . . . wasting the most poignant moments of the night and life.”

While both East and West Egg are wealthy communities, families with inherited wealth, or “old money,” live in the more fashionable East Egg. In West Egg, by contrast, residents whose wealth is new, like Gatsby, conspicuously mimic European aristocracy to appear established. Gatsby’s house is modeled on the Hotel de Ville (French for city hall) in Normandy, France, and was built by a brewer who offered to pay the neighbors to live in thatched cottages, like peasants. While many of the descriptions of the houses in the novel seem over the top, they are in fact based on real mansions that existed on Long Island in the 1920s. For example, an estate named Harbor Hill was also modeled on Hotels de Ville, and included farms, a blacksmith, a casino, and Turkish baths on its 650 acres. Despite such opulent displays of wealth, the novel suggests that the city, the suburbs, and the valley of ashes all share a sense of spiritual desolation and psychological desperation. In the end, then, it seems to matter little where the characters find themselves along the corridor between New York and the twin Eggs. Nobody in is happy about their lot in life.

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Источник: https://www.sparknotes.com/lit/gatsby/setting/

I. The Novel, the Author, and the Era

 

The Great Gatsby, which was originally published in 1925, chronicles the life of Nick Carrawayin Long Island, New York, and his view on society; a circle in which he finds himself a part of, along with the titular character, Jay Gatsby, his neighbour, and Daisy Fay-Buchanan, Nick’s cousin and Gatsby’s love interest. The novel is considered to be F. Scott Fitzgerald’s greatest work, which he wrote in 1924 when he moved to Valescure, France with his family, where they lived a lavish lifestyle that revolved around parties.

 F. Scott FitzgeraldFrancis Scott Key Fitzgerald (September 24, 1896 – December 21, 1940), was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he grew up with his parents, Mary McQuillan, an Irish-Catholic wholesale grocer and Edward Fitzgerald, a wicker furniture businessman. When Edward’s business failed, he took a job as a salesman for Procter & Gamble, which made him take his family on frequent trips to and from Buffalo, Syracuse, and upstate New York. In 1908, Edward lost his job and the family moved back to St. Paul when F. Scott was only 12.

In 1911, F. Scott attended the Newman School, a prestigious Catholic school in New Jersey, where his talent for writing was recognized by his teachers. Encouraged, he entered Princeton University in 1913 to further hone his craft, which he did so greatly, but at the expense of his coursework. And in 1917, he dropped out of the university and enlisted himself in the army. As a second lieutenant in the infantry, he was then assigned to station Camp Sheridan, Montgomery, Alabama, where he met Zelda Sayre, the then 18-year old daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court judge.

When the war ended in 1919, F. Scott went back to New York determined to be wealthy enough for Zelda to marry him. His novel, This Side of Paradise, was published in 1920, and at 24 years old, F. Scott became one of America’s most promising young writers. Its success was equated to Zelda marrying him a week after the novel’s publication, and they had one daughter, Frances Scott Fitzgerald. Soon after, F. Scott supported his family financially through his writing of novels and short stories, while living an extravagant celebrity-status lifestyle. In 1922, he published his second novel, The Beautiful and Damned. The book cemented his status in the literary scene as one of the age’s greatest writers, effectively chronicling this emerging culture of wealth, extravagance, and ambition in the 1920s.

This was the beginning of an era, which he labelled the “Jazz Age,” one that resonated in The Great Gatsby, with Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby echoing the life of its author, and Daisy Fay-Buchanansporting shades of his wife, Zelda. As seen through the eyes of Nick Carraway, we rediscover the age in which F. Scott Fitzgerald lived in and how he lived it ─ basking in its rhythm, alcohol, and culture, all of which is invoked in the novel, thus proving it to be a literary work critical of the American Dream and its modernism.

II. The Noble Experiment

 

One of the issues that reshaped America after the war was a number of political changes that included the Eighteenth Amendment. On January 16, 1919, the Eighteenth Amendment was ratified to be effective on January 16, 1920. The Eighteenth Amendment, proposed on December 18, 1917, ushered in the Prohibition era, which was led by the National Prohibition Act, or popularly known as “The Volstead Act.” This prohibition was meant to outlaw “the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors,” and with this law in effect, widespread illegal alcohol trade swept the United States.

Controlling alcohol consumption in America goes as far back to 1657, wherein the General Court of Massachusetts illegalized the sale of hard liquor. Succeeding attempts at prohibition came and went as alcoholic drinks became a staple at social gatherings, but as 18th century physician Benjamin Rush puts it, excessive drinking can cause physical and psychological deterioration. Temperance organizations were formed by communities in Connecticut, Virginia, and New York, with the former creating one as early as 1789, and the latter states in the 1800s. Other states soon followed suit in the coming decade.

The prohibition or “dry” movement began in the 1840s, urged on by religious denominations, most especially when liquor-distributing saloons were strongly associated with prostitution. Supporters of the prohibition were nicknamed “dry,” while opposing factions were termed as “wet.” Temperance communities reduced from taking drinking to a moderation to total abstinence from alcohol consumption. However, during the American Civil War, the movement weakened from 1861 to 1865, only to be revived by the Prohibition Party in 1869. In 1881, Kansas became the first state to have its Constitution outlaw liquor. Carrie Nation, along with The Carry Nation Prohibition Group, walked into saloons and reprimanded customers who drank. The group also used other ways in enforcing their cause: they destroyed bottles of liquor in the saloons, sang, prayed, and counselled saloon keepers to stop selling alcoholic drinks.

Anti-Saloon League The years that followed was known as the Progressive Era, stretching from 1890 to 1920. The Anti-Saloon League took over, causing pervasive hostility towards saloons, an advocacy that was extensive enough to influence political agendas. Prohibition became an important issue in both the state and local politics during the ensuing years, causing the two opposing forces, the “dries,” which were comprised of Protestant denominations who pegged saloons to be damaging and sinful, and the “wets,” Roman Catholics who deplored the idea of a government that dictated moral standards. When the dries outnumbered the wets in January 1917, 140 to 64 in the Democratic Party, and 138 to 62 among Republicans, it didn’t take long before the Volstead Act was implemented in the months that followed.

The Prohibition Era produced a handful of social problems: mafia organizations resorted to bootlegging, wherein they created a violent black market that catered to the alcohol needs of the rich and powerful. Gangs determined to climb up the ladder of notoriety influenced law enforcement agencies into corruption, causing price hikes in liquor due to its demand. Also, other people and opportunists resorted to make alcohol at home; those who opted to sell alcohol transported their goods from town to city, city to town. Having evaded taxation, with the illegal selling and purchasing of alcohol, these bootleggers began to soup-up their automobiles in order to outrun and escape the law. These bootleggers’ vehicles were known as “moonshine runners,” those who sped away from the clutches of the revenue agents or “revenooers” from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (BATF).

The music industry was also affected in the Prohibition Era ─ with saloons closing down with the inability to serve liquor, speakeasiesbecame go-to places. The Great Depression caused a migration: movement from New Orleans to Chicago, and then a continuing northward movement that lead to New York, where speakeasies featured jazz music. With the advancement in recording technology and prevalence in speakeasies, jazz music sprang into popularity.

III. Alcohol in The Great Gatsby

 

The great gatsby

Drinking liquor is one of the most noticeable activities that recur throughout the novel. It is often said that “writers write about what they know,” which essentially translates to writing autobiographically. F. Scott Fitzgerald, for instance,had lived a celebrated life; a lavish one that had a lot of drinking involved. This drinking spree of his eventually turned into a serious drinking problem, one that led people to brand him as an alcoholic. When Zelda suffered a mental breakdown, he also turned to alcohol to escape the reality that his wife was being incoherent; she had spent the remainder of her life in a mental institution. F. Scott’s last novel, Tender Is theNight, was critically praised, but sold poorly. And then he turned to screenwriting, but only completed onefull manuscript, Three Comrades, before he was fired because of his alcoholism.

It was during the time of the Prohibition that The Great Gatsby had been written, and the novel reflects this, with the people’s rampant thirst for liquor emanating in various scenes. In all nine chapters of the novel, there would be at least a single passage mentioning liquor, the act of drinking, or an appearance of someone drunk. The prevalence of drinking in the novel can serve as a basis F. Scott’s lifestyle, considering his struggle with alcohol.

In Chapter I, with the story set in 1922, the small party enjoying each other’s company at the Buchanan household has alcohol included in the serving list.Cocktails and heavy drinking are mentioned and presented early into the novel, via Jordan Baker and Tom Buchanan. Their drinking brings in the topic of Nick Carraway being a West Egger, and thus introduces the topic of Gatsby, his popularity, and his parties. Their conversations also grew meatier as topics went in and out of their thoughts: civilization, racism and white supremacist thinking, the butler’s nose, and Tom’s womanizing. Drinking causes them to speak bolder to each other, with fewer inhibitions, as Tom and Daisy Fay-Buchanan manage to tell Nick to woo Jordan Baker by the end of their meal.

In Chapter II, Nick Carraway is situated in an apartment living room with Tom and his mistress, Myrtle Wilson, when Tom brings out a bottle of whisky for them to enjoy. In this scene, Nick stresses that he had only been drunk twice in his life, that afternoon being the second. He described things to be dim and hazy, even as though the sun was up. Nick also narrates how, while seated, that whisky had the capacity to distort perception, turning everything senseless. They would be later joined by Myrtle’s sister, Catherine, and Mr. And Mrs. McKee. Again, it was while they were drinking that Gatsby is mentioned for being a party-thrower, among the other rumours about him. A second bottle of whisky was requested, and the scene that ensued after is Tom’s breaking of Myrtle’s nose. The violence that alcohol potentially induces in people when they are intoxicated is presented.

Nick and Jordan Baker

When Nick attends one of Gatsby’s parties for the first time in Chapter III, he immediately intends to get drunk at the cocktail table to simply elude looking alone and without purpose. Nick and Jordan Baker encounters a drunken Owl Eyes in this party for the first time, too, as they walk around the mansion and pass by the library in search for Gatsby. Owl Eyes, as he converses with the two, states that he had been intoxicated for a week. Another liquor-bathed scene at the party is well-depicted:

“There was dancing now on the canvas in the garden; old men pushing young girls backward in eternal graceless circles, superior couples holding each other tortuously, fashionably, and keeping in the corners ─ and a great number of single girls dancing individualistically, or relieving the orchestra for a moment of the burden of the banjo or the traps. By midnight the hilarity had increased. A celebrated tenor had sung in Italian, and a notorious contralto had sung in jazz, and between the numbers people were doing ‘stunts’ all over the garden, while happy, vacuous bursts of laughter rose toward the summer sky. A pair of stage twins, who turned out to be the girls in yellow, did a baby act in costume, and champagne was served in glasses bigger than finger-bowls. The moon had risen higher, and floating in the Sound was a triangle of silver scales, trembling a little to the stiff, tinny drip of the banjos on the lawn.” (53)

Owl Eyes’ statement and the quoted block above showcases the gung-ho lives that the partying people in West Egg elucidate. This party at Gatsby’s fashioned the drunkenness of its guests; people dancing closely to the tunes of popular Jazz music, a woman weeping, husbands arguing with their wives, and a road mishap. This kind of drinking comes off as some form of escapism for the uninvited guests, wherein their lives are romanticized as they live up to the hollow and wealthy way of the West Egg’s nouveau rich.

Speculation on Gatsby being a bootlegger is first mentioned in Chapter IV, as a number of ladies gossip about the mysterious Oxford man – a reference to Gatsby. It is in this chapter wherein Nick enumerates all the attendees of Gatsby’s parties during the summer, separating the East Eggers from West. In a particular flashback scene, Daisy is described to be drunk like a monkey by Jordanon the day before the Buchanans’ wedding, hogging a bottle of Sauterne, and talking in slurred gibberish. However, Daisy would soon revoke her drinking binges, as Jordan narrates how keeping sober among drunkards is an advantage. It allows one to control their speech and act with pecuilarity without anyone noticing.

Gatsby and Daisy

Chapter V features Gatsby and Daisy’s reunion, which had been set-up by Nick. As the two reach Gatsby’s room after a tour, Gatsbythen pulls out a wine glass and drinks a bottle of Chartreuse. Already nervous to begin with, Gatsby, as Nick had noticed, had passed through two states and was entering a third one, owing to his drinking. Embarrassment, unexplainable joy, and then an expanse of wonder at Daisy ─ Gatsby was in all of those three states.

 

In Chapter VI, along with the revelation of Gatsby’s past and connection to Dan Cody, it is also discovered that indirectly, Cody serves as the reason why Gatsby drinks so little; in parties, women would swathe his hair in champagne. Again, the speculation on Gatsby as a bootlegger is revived when Tom and Daisy attend one his parties. Tom throws the idea, relating it to the emergence of the new rich, as most of them were known to be big-time bootleggers.

On one scorching afternoon in Chapter VII, Gatsby and Nick are settled in the Buchanan’s living room with the household’s couple and Jordan Baker. Their drink of choice, as served by Tom in glassfuls of ice, are gin rickeys, and for lunch, they had some cold ale to douse the penetrating heat of that day. It was that same afternoon that Tom identifies the affair going on between his wife and Gatsby through the glances that they would give one another during that afternoon. Alcohol serves a purpose this time, as a device that pushes the characters towards honesty. The group then decides to stay in a suite in the Plaza Hotel for a mint julep in an attempt to counter the weather’s frustrating heat. In their room, a confrontation occurs as a bottle of whisky watches on; Tom barrages Gatsby with questions before asking the obvious – Gatsby and Daisy’s rekindled love affair. The chapter also reveals Gatsby as a bootlegger, running drugstores and selling alcohol over the counter. With Gatsby bludgeoned by Tom’s words and Daisy’s indecisiveness:

“..he gave that up, and only the dead dream fought on as the afternoon slipped away, trying to touch what was no longer tangible, struggling unhappily, undespairingly, toward that lost voice across the room.” (141)

Chapters VIII and IX barely contain alcohol consuming scenes, but there are a couple of images cited here and there. Take, for example, that in Chapter VIII, Catherine (Myrtle’s sister) was said to be intoxicated when she had been informed of her sister’s death. And in the last chapter, Chapter IX,no drinking scene is shown, but Nick envisions a woman in a white dress, dead-drunk and lying in a stretcher, her bejewelled hand hanging from the side.This is how Nick pictures the East: distorted, intoxicated beyond function.

Conclusively, as F. Scott Fitzgerald lived an extravagant life that revolved around drinking, so did the people of the West and East Egg, which serves as an indicator of the holding power of liquor on man. Gatsby died in the end, and even though he wasn’t a strong drinker, his Saturday parties was as a vessel for others to drown their selves in their own fantasies. As a modernist text, The Great Gatsby conveys the lives of America’s elite as people lived it up – actors of the emerging generation of wealth and power as presented by a character such as Jay Gatsby. The sociology of the wealthy is presented through such drinking affairs: that even strongly enforced laws such as the Volstead Act had been unable to incapacitate the modernist movement.

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Источник: https://www.bleedingthrough.com/the-prevalence-of-liquor-in-f-scott-fitzgeralds-the-great-gatsby/

I Love The Great Gatsby, Even if it Doesn’t Love Me Back

The books we love don’t always love us back. Like so many of us, I first read The Great Gatsby when I was a 16-year-old high school kid and Gatsby’s narrator Nick Carraway was the ripe old age of 29-about-to-turn-30 (of course, he still is). Nick was living in the most exciting city in the world, working at a job where in a few short years he might be making a fortune, and spending his evenings hobnobbing with his rich and connected relatives. I, on the other hand, lived in lower working-class, rural North Carolina and was one of the first generation of post-integrationist southern black kids. How often should you drink kombucha for health benefits from the actual day I turned 16, I worked at a fast food restaurant making less than five dollars an hour, and if I was lucky I spent my free time in front of a television or in the middle of a book. Let’s just say Nick’s life was very different from mine.

Still, I loved Nick. I was consumed by the glamour of his story and his telling of it: the lingering descriptions of glittering parties and decorated women. The romance! I loved the thrill of love, requited or not, and the enigmatic portentous green light, a symbol of the safe harbor that love should be but often isn’t. Reading Gatsby felt like an initiation into a rich, romantic, sophisticated, adult world that I, a poor, small town, black girl, desperately wanted to know. And the voice of Nick Carraway, his unfussy intelligence, his elegiac musings, his surprising turns of phrases (“secret griefs of wild, unknown men,” he says on the first page!) hooked me early and completely. The writing is not showy or precious but clear, with simple, lyrical declarations like the hardest easy sentences we write or say: Nothing more can be done. I love you. I want you back.

Gatsby drew me in like that. Maybe some of you have fallen hard and fast in love, and you know it is a heady and wonderful feeling, vertigo, breathlessness. You lose weight. Your skin becomes effervescent, as if parts of you could twinkle off. You feel dangerous and endangered. At first that danger is part of the giddy wonder of it, but soon you find yourself on your guard. You wonder what you have missed mid-swoon. What surprise lurks for you (disgusting personal habit, unforgivable character flaw) that you could not predict and have had no time to discover for yourself? Falling into the world of a classic book (or even a contemporary one) gives me that loving feeling, both exhilarated and immediately wary.

However swept up and away I may be, I can’t help but fear that the door of the book will suddenly close in my face by excluding or demeaning people of color, women, the poor; that it will announce directly or indirectly that I am not the target, not even a member of the desired audience, that the story was not written for me.

 

“However swept up and away I may be, I can’t help but fear that the door of the book will suddenly close in my face by excluding or demeaning people of color, women, the poor.”

 

I know that move to amend california job of literature is to showcase the lives of characters, with all their perplexing perversities, petty shortsightednesses, and bad judgements. I don’t expect or even want to be preached to by characters that know all, do and think all the right things, and never make crucial mistakes. People have limitations that are difficult to stomach sometimes. Good characters are similarly flawed. East and west egg great gatsby still it hurts to find yourself set outside, the butt of the joke. And it is especially painful when the joker is a character you admire. So when the cruel, violent bully Tom Buchanan declares The Rise of the Coloured Empires a prophetic book that admonishes whites to “watch out or these other races will have control of things,” or when Daisy Buchanan refers minecraft five nights at freddys her “white girlhood,” or when Nick’s almost-girlfriend, the lying tennis player Jordan Baker, announces that “we are all white here” during one of the most intense scenes of the novel, I smart from these comments, feel pushed away. But Nick Carraway, good-hearted, thoughtful Nick, who starts the book with his father’s generous admonishment—“Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone. . just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had how to contact stubhub seller advantages that you’ve had”—felt like the book’s exception.

F. Scott Fitzgerald no doubt saw a great deal of himself in Nick. In Fitzgerald’s essay series “The Crack Up,” he speaks of his own egalitarian impulses. “Like most midwesterners, I have never had any but the vaguest race prejudices” he writes. However when he felt he was cracking up, he hated most everyone in equal measure: “In these latter days I couldn’t stand the sight of Celts, English, Politicians, Strangers, Virginians, Negroes (light or dark), Hunting People, or retail clerks, and middlemen in general, all writers (I avoided writers carefully because they can perpetuate trouble as no one else can.”

I laugh every time I read Virginians and Negroes (light or dark). Clearly Fitzgerald is being flippant here, but it is easy to see Nick in this sentence. Nick, the generous cipher, the character who stands in for us (the readers), the decent outsider, a character who can entergy pay bill by phone equally non-judgmental at an assignation with Tom Buchanan’s mistress and her strange group of reveling friends, or with a known gangster, or with the haughty beauty Jordan Baker. But then that same Nick sees a limousine “driven by a white chauffeur, in which sat three modish negroes, two bucks and a girl.” And he announces that “Anything can happen now that we’ve slid over this bridge.” It hurts worse when Nick seems to share some of the thinking of Tom Buchanan, to see a world changing too quickly and unpredictably, becoming an unrecognizable and suspicious place.

Great books are great because they allow characters to be their difficult selves, to work through those difficulties (or not) and change (or not). These books require us to use our heads, to look at the totality of the story and the mission of the work. The reason Gatsby is successful, the reason East and west egg great gatsby am a great fan, and why I can be a fan without an asterisk or footnote, is Nick. He has a front row seat to this moneyed world and the cruel indifference those privileged few have for the striving and struggling masses. Harm comes to everyone who is not buffered by the power of wealth and class. Nick can be a part of that moneyed class, in ways that Gatsby or the Jewish gangster cannot, and certainly in ways that the rich black limousine riders cannot—but Nick rejects that life.

Ultimately, The Great Gatsby is also about the Great Nick, who in order to remain the uncompromised egalitarian he aspires to be has to leave the scene, though his exit is much less dramatic than Gatsby’s. This leaving, like all disavowals, is not without pain. Nick does not pretend that he has not been east and west egg great gatsby by the pull of the glimmering world he leaves behind, and he doesn’t pretend that a part of him is not grieving because he can never nest on the right egg. In the “Crack Up,” Fitzgerald says the measure of a first rate intelligence is to hold two opposing ideas in one’s head at the same time and still function. Because of his general decency, Nick can bankoh hawaiian airlines visa. He can east and west egg great gatsby thrive. But not in East or West Egg. Like most of us, Nick is not a revolutionary or a prophet. He cannot convert the blue bloods. He can only leave them.

If Gatsby is better than the whole lot of them, as Nick tells us, then perhaps Nick is as well. But he realizes more than Gatsby ever could (or would get a chance to know) that what he saw on the horizon was just a green light—not love at all and not even a signifier of it. However beautiful, however much we admire the glow, it is but a shimmering reflection, no more substantial than light on water. The way that we beat on, boats against that current, so to speak, is by continuing to make the best lives east and west egg great gatsby can, knocking on doors, even the ones we believe will never completely open. The book so admired as synonymous with the gilded Jazz Age is a book for our own time too, a time that is also characterized by economic and racial fear, a time of great wealth for a few and great uncertainty for many. The world is defined by change. We cannot change the world. We must change the world. Can we hold these ideas in our heads at the same time? The fact that we can and we must try for better for everyone is a bold and uncommon message for our times from a slim little book written nearly a century ago.

The books we love don’t always love us back. But how amazing when they do.

Источник: https://lithub.com/i-love-the-great-gatsby-even-if-it-doesnt-love-me-back/

The Great Gatsby Analysis

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In The Great Gatsby, West Egg and East Egg are polar opposites of one another.  Coincidentally, West Egg and East Egg are separated by a body of water.  Fitzgerald uses these settings in order to highlight the differences in social class that were prevalent in the 1920s (one can also argue that they are still prevalent today).

As we discussed, East Egg is OLD money, meaning its inhabitants east and west egg great gatsby money that has been passed down from many generations — it is in their blood.  East Egg is actually located in Manhasset — a still relatively affluent neighborhood today.  Remember that our vain and vapid characters Tom and Daisy Buchanan live there, which may explain their behavior. This means that they are aristocrats; Fitzgerald is highlighting on the remnants of aristocracy that still exist in America.  East and west egg great gatsby is ironic considering we are supposed to be a democratic nation, yet in Gatsby, we still have aristocrats in power and controlling America’s wealth.  How then can the American Dream be possible when aristocrats still maintain most of the power?  This is a question we should consider for the rest of the novel.

West Egg, located in Great Neck, Long Island, inhabits Gatsby and our narrator, Nick Carraway.  West Egg inhabits those from NEW money, meaning their money has not been handed down from generation to generation.  East and west egg great gatsby the contrary, they have made their money through entrepreneurship, crime (considering the boost in crime during the 1920s), or through working on Wall Street.  Nick is questionable, however, being that he lives in a house that he describes as an “eyesore”.  Daisy is his second cousin, so perhaps we assume him to have more money than he does; he claims he comes from a prominent family, but again this is questionable — would a “prominent” family from the Midwest allow their son to live in a somewhat decrepit house?  In addition, Nick claims that his father could only finance him for a year, highlighting on his lack of fortune.  Still, he possesses more status than those who live in the Valley of Ashes, which explains his residence in West Egg.

Interestingly enough,  Fitzgerald also lived where both Nick and Gatsby reside — Great Neck, Long Capital one online bill pay login Therefore, we can automatically assume that Fitzgerald is from new money.  Note that those who come from new money can never become old money no matter how hard they try!  It is not in their blood, and has not been passed down from generation to generation so there is a stark difference.  Keep this notion in mind for what is soon to come.

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Difference Between

What are the similarities and differences between East Egg and West Egg?

The East Egg is where those with old money live, and the West Egg is where the self-made, rich people live. While people living in the East Egg acquired their money through inheritance and with ease, those living in the West Egg acquired theirs through hard work.

Is West Egg less fashionable than East Egg?

Nick explains that West Egg is “the less fashionable of the two, though this is a most superficial tag to express the bizarre and not a little sinister contrast between them.” While readers know that Gatsby’s house is huge and opulent, West Egg is considered less fancy because the people who live there, including …

What are the differences between West Egg and East Egg quizlet?

West egg is new money, people who have worked hard for their money and earned their own money. East egg is old money and they have inherited their money and they haven’t worked for their money.

What does the East Egg and West Egg symbolize?

In the novel, West Egg and its denizens represent the newly rich, while East Egg and its denizens, especially Daisy and Tom, represent the old aristocracy. Fitzgerald portrays the newly rich as being vulgar, gaudy, ostentatious, and lacking in social graces and taste.

What does the West Egg symbolize?

West Egg stands for newly rich people like Gatsby. It is the world of those who make their own fortune and are not rich by birth. East symbolizes corruption, whereas West symbolizes goodness.

Who lives in West Egg in The Great Gatsby?

Jay Gatsby

Does Nick Carraway live in East or West Egg?

He lives in the West Egg district of Long Island, next door to Gatsby. Nick is also Daisy’s cousin, which enables him to observe and assist the resurgent love affair between Daisy and Gatsby.

Does Nick live in East Egg?

Tom and Daisy Buchanan are married and live in East Egg. Gatsby and Nick live in West Egg. Gatsby lives in a mansion; Nick lives in a small cottage next door.

Is East Egg new money?

The distinguishing between east and west egg is the best way that Fitzgerald describes the difference in wealth. Gatsby is forced to look across the water from his house in west egg while Tom and Daisy get to lavishly live in east egg. The west represents the new form of wealth, while the east represents old money.

Who is Nick’s neighbor in the Great Gatsby?

After moving to West Egg, a fictional area of Long Island that is home to the newly rich, Nick quickly befriends his next-door neighbor, the mysterious Jay Gatsby. As Daisy Buchanan’s cousin, he facilitates the rekindling of the romance between her and Gatsby.

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Descriptive Analysis and Comparisons

Key difference: The East Egg is where all the ‘Old Money’ families live. These are old established and extremely wealthy families. Whereas, the West Egg, or ‘New Money’, are the people that have recently come into money, mainly due to the economic boom. However, there is this huge gap separating the two classes, symbolized in the book by the bay located between the Eggs.

The Great Gatsby is east and west egg great gatsby novel by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. It is set in Long Island, NY during the Roaring Twenties, specifically summer of 1922.  The Roaring Twenties represent a prosperous time in American History after World War I. The Twenties were known for their social, artistic, and cultural dynamism, as well as unprecedented industrial growth. The Roaring Twenties become the back drop for the novel and are quite significant in the conflict of the novel.

Fitzgerald places our characters on the East Egg and West Egg. The East Egg and West Egg are based on Manhasset Neck and Great Neck, respectively, two peninsulas on the coast of Long Island, NY. These Eggs are often used as symbols to reiterate the main conflict of the novel, which is the difference between ‘Old Money’ and ‘New Money’.

The East Egg is where all the ‘Old Money’ families live. These are old established and extremely wealthy families. Whereas, the West Egg, or ‘New Money’, are the people that have recently come into money, mainly due to the economic boom. However, there is this huge gap separating the two classes, symbolized in the book by the bay located between the Eggs.

The East Egg is also a symbol for the East, i.e. the Eastern Coast and the moral decay and social cynicism of New York. The West Egg, on the other hand, stands for the West, specifically, the Midwestern and northern areas such as Minnesota, where all of the main characters hail from. Hence, the West Egg is symbolic of the more traditional social values and ideals of America.

Throughout the novel, Jay Gatsby, one of the main characters and one of ‘New Money’, tries to reach out and be equal to the Buchanans, one of the old families. However, they always look down upon Gatsby, mainly due to the fact that he is new money and is flashy with his money. This is despite the fact that over the course of the novel, Gatsby is proven to be a better person than the Buchanans. However, Gatsby is blinded by Daisy Buchanan, i.e. the allure of aristocracy, and pays for this with his life.

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east and west egg great gatsby

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