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URL :  The Great Gatsby
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Author : Francis Scott Fitzgerald
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The Great Gatsby is the third novel of the American author Francis Scott Fitzgerald. The American publisher Charles Scribner's Sons issued the book in 1925. Although, a wider audience rediscovered the text in the 1940s. The Great Gatsby is now considered one of the most important works of American Modernism.

In the novel, Fitzgerald describes the summer of 1922 in the fictional town of West Egg. The main character is the young and mysterious millionaire, Jay Gatsby, who loves the beautiful Daisy Buchanan for years. But she married another man during Gatsby's military service.

Plot

The narrator of the story is Nick Carraway, a young man who lives in New York in 1922 as a securities trader. Nick moves into an old and modest house in West Egg. The location of West Egg is on Long Island on the east coast of the United States. In the palatial neighboring home lives Jay Gatsby, the main character of the novel. Gatsby is a young millionaire and businessman. His mysterious origins, unclear education, and immense wealth generate rumors among society.

Even though Jay Gatsby has extravagant dance parties for New York society in his home, he is a lonely person, as the story goes. At the bottom of Gatsby's heart, he wants to bring back the past and be with the love of his life, Daisy. But while Gatsby fought in France as a soldier in the First World War, Daisy married Tom Buchanan.

Daisy has a three-year-old daughter with Tom. He is a conservative millionaire and belongs to a wealthy family. Also, Tom is the rough-faced ex-football and current polo player. They live on the opposite side of the bay in East Egg. Tom has been cheating on his wife for some time with Myrtle Wilson, the wife of a simple gas station owner. A car accident causes a series of misunderstands with Myrtle Wilson, which leads to a tragic end.

Main Characters

The main characters of this book are:

Nick Carraway

Nick is the narrator of the novel. He was born in 1892 in Minnesota, a state in the Midwestern United States. He studied at the prestigious Yale University and graduated in 1915. Also, he fought in the First World War. After the war, he moves to New York to start his professional life in stock and securities trading. He claims to be an honest man and reluctant to judge others. This prudence and passivity make him a good listener.

In the beginning, Nick knows nothing about his neighbor, Gatsby, and he does nothing during the novel to change that condition. Gatsby's background does not interest him. But, over time, Nick gets to know Gatsby better than anyone who tries to investigate him.

Jay Gatsby

Gatsby is a young rich man who lives in a luxury villa in West Egg. Weekly parties in the Gatsby house are popular. But, no one knows where he comes from or what business owes his fortune. Gatsby hates poverty and cherishes wealth and luxury.

As a young officer, he meets Daisy, and his desire for money increase after that, because he wants to marry her. And Gatsby knows that he needs to be rich so he can be with Daisy. Indeed, she promises to wait for him but marries Tom Buchanan while Gatsby is in Oxford after the war. Now Gatsby is doing everything he can to retake Daisy. He is ready for anything to realize this goal. His money, his house, his weekly parties are all means for this purpose.

Further, the party guests considered Gatsby a generous and attentive host. However, most of them have never met Gatsby or be in touch with him. Likewise, beauty and wealth surround Gatsby. Like all characters in the novel, Gatsby seeks to build an identity in New York society.

On the one hand, Gatsby sees himself as a "comedian" because he expresses his feelings for Daisy by showing his possessions. In contrast, Gatsby looks like a mythical figure of profundity and tremendous expressiveness. He is a personification and an expression of the American dream.

Daisy Buchanan

Daisy is Nick's cousin; she belongs to a respected family. Many officers, including Gatsby, courted her in their hometown. But she fell in love with Gatsby and promised to be with him after the war. Hence she never knows that he had faked his social position. But when the wealthy Tom Buchanan proposed during Gatsby's absence, she could not resist.

The reader gets to know Daisy through Nick's impressions and judgments. Daisy is superficial and cynical. She lives in boredom and claims to have seen everything and been everywhere. Nick also knows that people like Daisy and Tom will always hide behind their money. Daisy's dealings with her daughter Pammy are an indicator of her emotional emptiness. She has never been more than a wealthy beauty.

Themes

Fitzgerald deals in this novel with the social transformation of American society after the First World War. And it develops themes such as the American dream contradictions, the search for happiness, and the success of a consumer society. Fitzgerald discusses how morality and social status matter in marriage during that time.

The book contains a compelling description of the Prosperous Twenties. The Great Gatsby is one of the best American novels. Literary historian Peter Conn points out that Fitzgerald felt a special connection to the 1920s.

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