Great Gatsby

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  • Created by: Abbih
  • Created on: 04-05-15 13:11

Chapter one

  • Introduced to narrator. Setting of West and East egg established. Nick begins soty with his first visit to Tom and Daisy's house, where Jordan is introduced and the reader is informed of Tom's mistress.Chapter ends with a brief description of Gatsby look out to East Egg at a green light.
  • 1st person retrospective and homodigetic. Nick introduces himself as an ideal narrator: 'I am inclined to reserve all judgements'. Nick then says he has a 'limit', contradiction seems to suggest opinions and values are likely to colour perception of events and characters. Reminder from Fitzgerald that Nick controls events-not objective and blurred by own opinion
  • Setting in chapter one are symbolic, fitzg begins to create tension between Tom and Gatsby. Physically divided Gatsby at 'the less fashionable' and Tom and Daisy in East Egg. Gatsby's 'factual imitation'-beginning to question authenticty of Gatsby's past, 'thin beard of raw ivy' reinforces that he has 'new money' reader is curious how, building the mystery of Gatsby. Contrast with Tom's 'colonial mansion' obtained from 'old money'. Foreshadow Gatsby and Tom will not get on- predicts Daisy's choice to side with Tom due to the fact Gatsby can only off the 'vulgarity of new money'
  • Begins to establish characters. Characteristation of Daisy direct speech 'low' 'thrilling' voice-alluring. Despite the fact that her voice makes people 'lean toward her', as Tom enters Daisy is said to have 'balooned slowly to the floor', highlights dominance and control he has over her. Tom further characterised- 'he seemed to say, "just because I'm stronger and more of a man than you are". Hints @ Nick contempt for Tom, suggests he will be tha antagonist or threat in the novel.  Makes us feel it is okay for Gatsby to have an affair with Daisy, and makes us dislike Tom. Fitzgerald stresses further in the invasion of the telephone call from Tom's mistress, Mrytle
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Chapter one cont.

which Nick described as 'the fifth guest'. Hints as tension between Diasy and Tom,  making us feel Gasby and Daisy's affair will be even more justified-Showing Gatsby in a favourable light.

  • Nick sees Gatsby- 'figure emerged from the shadow' as he is not explicitly in chapter, reader more anxious for his introduction. Use of sequence of 'secure positon' to 'he had vanished' suggests mysterious qualities as though his character is an illusion. Fitzgerald set up a great expectation for Gatsby.
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Chapter Two

  • Begins with description of bleak VOA. Nick meets mrytle,and wilson. Scene changes to small, drunken party in Mrytle's Ny Apartment, ends with Nick waiting in the station the next morning
  • 1st person narr. Nicks positions useful as a 'passive hero' as this means he is observant make us believe Nick gives and objective and reliable account. Tom 'forcing me from the car', as his 'determination to haver my company boarded on violence'. Contrast between Nick and Tom shows how he seems to guided in events rather than shaping them himself. Tells his story through observation, as of course Nick's narrative is retroscpective. Crucial in making part atmospheric as Nick describes in great detail.
  • Use of imagery-> VOA symbol of american dream 'motor road' personified as 'shrinks away' and the 'grotesque gardens' suggest decay of the american society. Through economic decay symbolised by Geroge Wilson's buissnesses failure and deterioation. Moral decay through adultery of Tom and Mrytles relationship. Nick narr. POV used to describe Mrytle's 'smouldering' body and 'wet' lips clearly identifies her as sexual object for Tom. Repetition of the word 'grey' also helps to illustrate decay in society- especially in VOA.
  • Myrtle charac in NY apartment by nicks narr POV: 'Mrs Wilson had changed her costume' amd 'her assertions became more violently affected'. Nck description of Myrtle shows how she is playing a role, Fitzg suggests her pretence of trying to be Tom equivalrent. Despite this, use of dialogue hint she is not intellectual-'She had my appendicitis out', highlights real social class- shows that she wll always be Tom's inferior even in NY
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Chapter Two cont.

characters cannot dispense with the social class boundaries.

  • Fitzgerald allows readers to speculate that Nick could be an unreliable narrator by attempt to reconstruct the afternoon. Nick states: 'everything has a dim, hazy cast over it' shows how greatly affected the narrative is by his consumption of alcohol.
  • Also suggested through expansion and collapsing of time, shown throught sentance structure choices. For example no description of several hours then, 'sometime towars midnight'. A climaz is induced by the exclamatory sentences of Mrytle's speech 'Daisy!Daisy!Daisy!' this builds up tension, followed by 'short deft movement' results in broken nose. Characterises Tom, shows how quickly he has made a decision and shows no remorse for consequence. Fitzgerald use of this foreshadows what Tom's choices later in the novel, for example, he frames Gatsby for killing Myrtle knowing this could possibly lead to his death. Evident from Fitzgerald's variation of sentence structure that Tom is made to appear contemptuous, showing he does not respect Myrtle, which makes the reader hate Tom and feel that Gatsby and Daisy's affairt will be even more justified because of Tom's barbaric nature.
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Chapter Three

  • Nick describes Gatsby's weekend parties, Nick is invited to one of the infamous parties, whilst there he overhears a lot of rumours about Gastby. Jordan and Nick whilst looking for Gatsby find Owl Eyes, Following this, Nick meets Gatsby and shortly after sees Jordan go off with Gatsby to speak in private. Chapter ends with the focus on Nick and Jordans relationship.
  • 1st person, homodigetic and retrospective narrator. Self-concious story teller: 'reading over what I have written so far'- suggest how he is in control of the way the reader views the sotry. Particularly significant in this chapter, as Nick is able to build up a climax to the introdcution of Gatsby and influence our opinion of Gatsby in his introduction.
  • Fitzgerald cont. to heighten mystery of Gatsby through the use of voice from minor charac. 'He killed a man once' and he was 'a German spy during the war' shows how reality of comment not contemplated,but instead excite them, encourages reader to question Gatsby's character and like the minor characters- ask themselves where his wealth has came from. Also makes reader question if these guests are actually real friends, inclusion of minor characters characterises Gatsby as lonely, suggest Gatsby's parties are not for friends- but to attract Daisy. This is evident again when she later is 'appaled' by the parties, and they stop happening.
  • Inclusion of 'Owl Eyes'-> we value his perception of Gatsby because of connotations of an Owl being wise and perceptive. 'What realism' suprises when book is authentic, is Fitzgeralds way of suggesting Gatsby is using his wealth to mask something, as though Gatsby himself is an illusion or fake. Introd idea of theatrical and illusory quality of Gatsby life embodied
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Chapter Three cont.

in the title 'The Great Gatsby' because of the similarity to title of a magician like 'Great houdini'.

  • Nick's narr POV allows Fitzgerald to imply how this story will be told in favour of Gatsby, as Nick displays Gatsby with excessive romantiscm 'you may come across four or five time in life'. Fitzg use of this means he is able to show Gatsby in a light which avoids his moral corruption, securing readers liking of Gatsby. Also from Jordan's direct speech describing Gatsby's story as 'simply amazing' Fitzgerald is able to move the plot on, and excite the reader as it implies that the mystery of Gatsby will begin to diffuse.
  • Fitzgerald inclusion of the car crash at the end of the party allows This acts as a forshadowing device for chapter seven, Myrtle's death Fitzgerald is able to use this to introduce the recurring motif of dangerous driving as an analogy for life in 'the roaring twenties' 
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Chapter four

  • Chapter four begins with Nick listing all the guests from gatsby's parties and their scandels. After this Gatsby drop by Nicks to take him to New York. On the journey Gatsby tries to dispel the rumours about him and reveal his 'past' to Nick.  After the journey they meet Wolfshiem n a cellar bar. At the end of the chapter Nick meets up with Jordan who recounts Gatsby and Daisy's past, Gatsby's intention to meet up with Daisy is revealed.
  • 1st person retrospective and homidgetic narrator. Due to his involvement with Gatsby it can be said Nick is a subjective narrator, and the idea that Gatsby 'came alive' to him by the story suggests that Nick is ignoring the tragedy of Jordans recount. Fitzgerald use of this narrator allows the reader to side with Gatsby, as Nick does not contemplate his moral corruption in the novel. He also employs a narrative shift to Jordan, Fitzgerald's inclusion of this secures the readers approval of Daisy and Gatsby's relationship, as it is now not only Nick who is romanticising their relationship. However Fitzgerald also makes the reader question Jordan- as Jordan 'admired her the most' she may be likely to embelish the story to make Daisy appear strong and resilient. 
  • Gatsby's direct speech makes the reader suspicious of his past- 'educated at oxford' 'all the capitals of Europe' at the very least, the reader will think he has exaggerated his past. Fitzgerald use of this is to build on the mystery from the minor characters in chapter 3- as a reader it seems none of the characters will tell the truth about Gatsby- even himself. It is structurally significant that Fitzgerald witholds the truth until just before Gatsby's death as 
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Chapter four cont.

it allows the reader to learn more about his unwavering love for Daisy, which can be argued justifies his past. Fitzgeralds use of this also avoids Gatsby being a 'villan' or a 'fake', so his death is ultimatelty more powerful and one of a fallen hero rather than anything else. 

  • Fitzgerald uses the setting of New York to present the ideology of the American Dream- Nick describes it as having 'wild promise' and potential for all. However this is Juxtaposed with the Cellar and Wolfshiem. He is described as having 'small eyes' and offers Nick a 'gonnection', from this, Wolfshiem is characterised as untrustworthy and shady. This could be used to hint the reader at further things about Gatsby. As he says that Wolfsheim is a 'smart man' which suggests he condone what he does-what we learn of WS we simultaneously learn about Gatsby. This is further stressed with Fitzgerald use of real people- 'Rosy Rosenthal' would have allowed a 1920's readers speculate of Wolfsheim character.
  • The narrative shift to Jordan helps paint the idea that Gatsby was a lovesick soldier, and makes Daisy look more complex than her childish disposition up until this chapter: 'she cried and cried'. Fitzgerald may use this to help prove that there love was genuine, as it is not just Nick's view point which is so impressionable, the affair is more justified and in terms of immorality, there adultery beginning in the chapter five is introduced making it less shocking. 
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Chapter five

  • Chapte five's main focus is Daisy and Gatsby's reunion. Gatsby has servent prepare Nick's house for her arrival,but on the day itself,her grows nervous and worries that Daisy will not come. When she does come, it is awkward, prompting Nick to leave. When he returns, they are both more relaxed, and Gatsby invites Nick and Daisy round his house. The chapter end with Nick walking home in the rain.
  • 1st person, retrospective and homodigetic narrator.As the reader hears the recount through Nick VP we are potentially seeing Daisy and Gatsby's reunion as an onlooker. It may be given in an unreliable for as one has to consider that Nick may be embellishing the story in favour of Gatsby's love for Daisy, as he feels valued that Gatsby wanted him there, saying 'absolutely old sport' about him accompanying them. This may influence how he describes the day retrospectively, as he felt valued at the time and also feels responsible to show his life in a good light, now that he is dead. 
  • Fitzgerald uses pathetic fallacy to mimic the story unfolding in the chapter. The 'day agreed upon was pouring rain'  despite Gatsby's desperate efforts to organise the 'flowers' and make it as pleasent as possible, he is dissappointed.  . Fitzgerald may use this to suggest that Gatsby’s desires are unattainable, which foreshadows Gatsby's dream itself, as Daisy cannot fufill Gatsby's wishes regardless of how much Gatsby does or tries to do, which is also suggested in the comment 'Daisy tumbled short of his dreams'. 
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Chapter 5 cont.

  • The dramatic climax of Daisy and Gatsby's reuinion structurally significant, as Chapter five is the centerpiece of the novel, it is important in the deveolpment of the plot. Through the sentance structure in 'It stopped. Daisy's face, tipped sideways beneath a three-cornered lavender hat' Daisy is characterised as idyllic and gracious, even on meeting Gatsby she is able to speak in an 'artifical note' of happiness, despite the fact she is shocked to see him.  This is juxtaposed with Gatsby, who is 'pale as death' and acts 'tragically'. Fitzgerald uses this to make the reader contemplate at this point, as before he had been described as 'gorgeous' and confident, we may see this as the downfall of Gatsby and his dream rather than the beginning. It also evokes sympathy in the reader, as we are shocked to see such a different Gatsby, it is obvious how important she is to him.
  • Descriptive/poetic language 'glowed' 'radiated' Is used to show Nicks desperate attempt to persuade the reader of their love. Despite this, an element in his description hints that this 'radiating' love does not live up to Gatsby's dream: 'aching' 'greiving' and 'smeared with tears'. Gatsby has idealised Daisy in his mind, which makes it inevitable that Daisy will fail to meet Gatsby aspirations. This may be indicating how Daisy will betray Gatsby later.
  • In terms of 'winning' Daisy's love, Gatsby's seem to believe his possessions have accomplished their purpose- they impress her, which he believes secure their courtship. Narrative viewpoint is used to show Gatsby appears from Nick. 'I think he revalued everything in his house according to the measure of response it drew from her'This shows how he is beginning to misjudge her- as Nick can see when she say 'I've never seen such-such beautiful shirts before' that she isnt overwhelmed by her love for Gatsby or their reunion,but the overt display of his wealth. 
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Chapter six

  • Chapter six begins with a brief description of some of the stories being spread about Gatsby. The focus then turns to Gatbsy's true past with Dan Cody. After this, tom drops by Gatsby's house, and later Tom and Daisy attend one of Gatsby's parties, the chapter ends with the story of Daisy and Gatsby's first kiss.
  • Homidigetic and retrospective narrator. Despite saying the 'truth was' fitzgerald makes the reader concious of the fact Nick is contructing how we percieve the plot by Nick's comment 'he told me all this very much later'. Fitzgerald use of this allows the reader a deeper understanding of his motivation just before the 'conception of himself' begins to fall apart later in the chapter but also as Gatsby didnt even tell Nick this at this point, Fitzgerald aloud the reader to feel slightly discouraged of how Gatsby managed to keep up this illusion for so long.
  • Through the use of Nick's narrative viewpoint,it becomes clear that in reality, Gatsby is a fabrication of James Gatz braught up from 'shiftless and unsuccessful people' who transformed with the help of Dan Cody.  Nick described Dan Cody as  bringing  'the savage violence of the frontier brothel and saloon', the name Dan Cody itself has connotations of 'Buffalo Bill' Cody, taking both these things into consideration, it seem Dan Cody could of perhaps been a bad influence. The  inclusion of Cody in the story helps to develop our knowledge on Gatsby, although the reader is impressed at the determination James Gatz had, they begin to feel unnerved by his ability to perfom such a pretence.
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Chapter six cont.

  • Fitzgerald also uses Gatsby's house to characterise Gatsby and his desire to impress Daisy. This is perhaps one of the most important devices Fitzgerald uses in this chapter as Daisy is 'appalled by West Egg' the reader begins to realise that the illusion he has created does not please Daisy. This helps fitzgerald move the plot on, as it builds up tension and because increasingly obvious that Gatsby's dream has ulitmately failed. 
  • Fitzgerald utilises the shift in time by Nick to tell the story of Gatsby and Daisy's first kiss. Through Nick point of view the story is told in poetic language: 'she blossomed for him like a flower', 'unutterable visions'.  Nick sells Gatsby and Daisy's relationship like a classic 'love story', however despite this, the adgectivs 'pershiable' and 'appaling' at as a reminder of how Gatsby is living in the past, which confirms the inevitable doom of their relationship and in extension, Gatsby's life. 
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Chapter seven

  •  Chapter seven is the climax of the novel-Gatsby,Jordan, Nick , Tom and Daisy go to the plaza,it is a very hot day. In the plaza an argument break out between Tom and Gatsby over Daisy. On their way home, Mrytle is ran over and killed by Daisy whilst Gatsby is in the car.
  • Homodigetic and retrospective narrator, and later the alternative view point of Michaelis and Gatsby later in the chapter. This use of a stranger to narrate the story is unusual- as Nick has always been used a narratorr unless other character are used to relate matters to him, which he subsequently retells. The effect of using is that Fitzgerald is able to instil a sense of distance from Myrtle, although the reader know Myrtle her sensuous, physical nature and injury well, they are made to feel bizaarely disconnected with the event of her death and unemotional, like Michaelis.
  • Use of pathetic fallacy. The verb 'broiling' creates a backdrop fro heated emotions and the rising tension betwen Tom and Gatsby. The intese heat suggests the sicomfors: 'its too hot to fuss', this structurally can be seen as the peak before the climax- the heat is used to stress this. At the same time as this, Pammy also appears which acts as a sharp reminder that Gatsby's dream can never be how he wanted it to be. The introduction of pammy is structurally significant, as it suggests this climax should be expected to lead to the disintegration of Gatsby's dream, as it is already faltered. 
  • Use of dialogue establishes the antagonist and protagonist roles which characterise Tom and Gatsby. 'presumptous little flirt is over' makes Tom appear to have the upperhand
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Chapter seven cont.

, this foreshadows Daisy choice to side with Tom. As Daisy learns about the truth of Gatsby's history this seems to be why she has a 'lost voice' and also why Gatsby lost daisy herself. Fitzgerald use of this is to present the ideology, that love that is gained by deception, ultimately fails. Fitzgerald implies that a society with debased values has a bleak future.

  • Gatsby and Tom have several cars which display there wealth. 'brisk yellow bus' of 'monstrous length' reflects tasteless new money, which Gatsby uses to show Daisy his wealth. It is ironic that Mrytle who craved luxury and social mobility, is killed by a monumnetal symbol of wealth- Gatsby's motor car. Fitzgerald use of Myrtle, who cannot escape the valley of ashes, symbolise the american's failure to progress, as the social divide remains entrenched. The description  of Myrtle's 'thick dark blood' mingled 'with the dust', allows the reader to identify that the social classes cannot be dispensed- as with Myrtle, Gatsby cannot escape his real identity and social roots, and in extension, his death.   
  • The ending of the chapter moves the plot closer to the protagonist downfall, 'standing there in the moonlight-watching over nothing', increasing the tension now as he has lost everything. 
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Chapter eight

  • Chapter eight is extremely significant in this novel in the sense of Gatsby's romantic but impossible dream that is destroyed by moral corruption and wealth. The chapter confirms the novel as a 20th century tragedy as Fitzgerald's use of the sympathetic narrator Nick Carraway establishes the tragic inevitability of Gatsby's fate. Fitzgerald begins the chapter with the intention of conveying that Gatsby's hopes are now more unattainable than they ever were before: 'the fog-horn groans incessantly'  and in the night Nick 'tossed half-sick between grotesque reality and savage frightening dreams' ; these images foreshadow the nightmare of Gatsby;s death to come. This idea is juxtaposed with Nick's conversation with Gatsby when he suggests he should leave. Gatsby has made such a large error of judgement in believing in Daisy, that his reply to this is 'go away now,old sport?' Fitzgerald shows through this passage how Gatsby is still holding on to his failed dream, and his refusal to let go can only end in his death.
  • Not told chronologically, after focus of N&g present at start,Fitzg shift back to when D&G fist met met, Nick states 'he told it to me because 'Jay Gatsby' had broken up like glass against Tom's hard malice'. Fitzgerald use of this simile characterises Gatsby as a 'fallen hero' Nickbiased view influences the reader to believe that Tom's 'malice' was a reason for why it is inevitable Gatsby's dream must fail. This secure the readers liking of Gatsby, and reinforces the contempt we feel for Tom.
  • Inclusion of direct speech makes the recount more emotive, as we are finally hearing 
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Chapter eight cont

  • the real gatsby. 'I can't describe to you how suprised I was to find I loved her old sport', this makes his death more poignant and tragic, Now the reader is aware of his immorality but able to overlook it as we feel so disheartend that Daisy has let Gatsby down-evokes sympathy.
  • This convey of Gatsby's uwavering devotion is compared to Daisy 'leaving Gatsby nothing'. The imagery created by 'Daisy, gleaming like silver,safe and proud above the hot sturggles of the poor' characterises Daisy as empty and soul-less, which foreshadows her choice of going for a safe life with Tom, confirming how futile Gatsby's beliefs in Daisy are, and the failure of Gatsby's realisation increases the readers sense of the tragic inevitability.
  • Fitzg briefly interrupts past narrative to focus on Gatsby's present delusion, his belief that Daisy never loved Tom. The irrational idea is embodies in the 'curious' remark: 'it was just personal'. Nick reporting of these events seem to point toward Gatsby's desperate loneliness and also stresses the juxtaposition of his longing for the past and the tragic end to the future.
  • The end of the chapter shows further time shifts to the the event after Myrtle's death, Michaelsis's narrative is embedded into Nick's to give a 'factual' account of Wilson's actions. Fitzgerald uses this to build suspense to the final moment when he choses to the close the chapter, like a classic tragedy, with Gatsby's murdeor, Wilson's suicide and 'the holocaust was complete'. Gatsby death is conveyed almost beautifully with a 'thin red circle' which confirms the idyllic life Gatsby believed in until his death. 
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Chapter nine

  • In the final chapter of 'The Great Gatsby', Nick begins by recalling the aftermath of Gatsby's death, and recounts Gatsby's funeral in which Gatsby's father turns up too. After this Nick sees Tom, the chapter end with Nick contemplating Gatsby's 'story' and intending to move back west.
  • Narr vp crucial in exposing Nick's reason for dedicating a novel to Gatsby. He states Gatsby's 'protests continued in my brain', from this, the reader is able to recognise Nick feels responsible for him. Perhaps Fitzgerald employs this to justify Nicks influenctial romantiscm of Gatsby. Aswell as this, the use of time in the chapter is important in showing Nick's memory has not faded: 'Half an hour', 'After two years', which further suggests how this has had a large affect on the rest of his life. Tom and Daisy had 'gone away early' which characterises Daisy and Tom as cowards. The significance of seeing Tom is to bring closure to the story, as Tom shows no remorse, Fitzgerald suggests that people will not change, which is embodied in the comment by Nick:'they smashed up things... then retreated back into their money'.
  • As Wolfshiem admits he raised gatsby 'from nothing' and 'knew he could use him good', Fitzgerald is able to show how Gatsby had potential and longed to create his ideal self, unfortunately he could only achieve this by resorting to being used by Wolfshiem, being englufed into his corruption. Evoking sympathy from the reader.
  • Inclusion of Gatsby's father develops Gatsby charatcerisation, as he is in a 'long cheap ulster' the reader is reminded of Gatsby origins, and the moral that he could not escape his
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Chapter nine cont

to disown his past completeltely. His attempt to this potentially lead to his downfall.

  • Through Nick description of the funeral, fitzgerald is able to establish a juxtaposition between this and his parties, 'nobody came' in comparison to the flooded halls of his parties. This is also evident in the bland, factuals descriptions of the funeral: 'our procession of five cars reached the cemetry and stopped in a thick drizzle', which shows no sign of glamour- seen in the 'blue gardens' and 'gaudy colours'. The use of this allows Fitzgerald to question Gatsby's life, and the idea of the title : 'the great gatsby', as it seems to suggests that he was no different from Nick or the other characters, his supposed 'greatness' and fabrication of his dream is what lead to his death.
  • The last sentance 'and so we beat on, boat againt the current...' is a metaphor used to depict how human beings working hard against all odds to better themselves. However, this is then followed by "borne back ceaselessy into the past" which seems to suggest that 1920's thinkign and beahviour wasn't actually allowing societies forward progression. The lifestyle and values than many people had were materialistic,selfish,excessive and wasteful,none of which allowed for new ideas of forward thinking, It also suggests how the past is enscapeable, Gatsby was obsesses with he and Daisy's past, and now even now Nick finds himself so concerned with the past that he finds it necessary to write a book about it.
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