Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Gatsby and Daisy Forever? (or for 5 Minutes?)

If you have read Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby' you may have thought it was a love story. To some it is, but to most who study it in school or read it with an analytical eye start to wonder about the romance that dominates the narrative. Does Gatsby really love Daisy, or more specifically does e love her as a person, or just as a status symbol. There are valid arguments to be made on both sides.

We'll start with the idea the idea that Gatsby does love Daisy as this is the most common interpretation taken from the book. Lets have a look at some quotes from the great Gatsby to prove this.

Well for a start there is Gatsby bought the house so Daisy would be just across the bay, and the casual way he remembers that the last time they saw each other was five years last November. Even the weather thinks Gatsby is in love with Daisy, when they meet again for the first time in years the room is filled with twinkle bells of sunshine.

So is it clear that he loved something about her but we still don't know what. One of the most easily believable options is he wants her as a trophy wife. The perfect women to complete his perfect image. He says that fact that 'many men had loved her increased her value in his eyes' which makes you think that he doesn't care about the girl but about her image, what people think of her and therefore her husband. He also spends a lot of time talking about how beautiful her house is, again hinting that what he loves about her is her status as the richest and most desirable girl, rather than anything about her personality.

A third option is also on the table and it's one that I personally agree with. Gatsby doesn't love her as a person, and doesn't just want her to look good on his arm, although that is a fringe benefit. He wants her just for the challenge of getting her, the thrill of the chase. Gatsby is obsessed with the American Dream, of making himself perfect through nothing but the sweat of his own brow. Daisy rejected him for being poor in his youth so now he has to prove how much he has climbed the social ladder by winning her love. I like this idea the most because it makes sense of his ridicules need for her to say she never loved Tom, if he loves her, as a person or a status symbol he would quit while he was ahead, but he can't.

In conclusion, Gatsby definitely loves something about Daisy, that much is clear but whether it is her as a person, her as the perfect wife,were just the fact she's the next to do on his to-do list is up for debate. Personally, I think intentions were good, I think he really thought he did love her but when the moment came he found she tumbled short of an expectations and the only thing he knew how to do was carry on trying to live the dream.

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