Chapter 3 Gatsby blog notes


Pay attention to Nick's judgements. What do they reveal about his character (especially in relation to his opening comments)?

  • "men and girls came and went like moths among the whisperings and the champagne and the stars"
  • "girls"- infantilises women- makes sound as if too young+ innocent to attend- reveals Nick sees "women" as "girls"- disrespect towards them
  • lack of respect for women- sexist views- "cordials so long forgotten that most of his female guests were too young to know one from another"- sexisim through specification that only women wouldn't know "forgotten" cordials- "too young to know one from another" further infantalises women
  • Nick has cynical view of world- "like moths"- moths associated with fragility, lack of substance coz colour, lack of independent will- moths follow the light the way most of the people at the party followed other people there+ free booze)
  • "I slunk off in the direction of the cocktail table- the only place in the garden where a single man could linger without looking purposeless and alone"- cynicisim= fear of how others will see him, esp through "purposeless and alone"
  • cynical view of self as single man, "I was on my way to get roaring drunk from sheer embarassment"+ "I slunk off..."- rather be seen as drunk single than sober single- new side to Nick, cares about how seen+ doesn't know how to cope with embarassment
  • "Welcome or not, I found it necessary to attatch myself to someone before I should begin to address cordial remarks to passers-by"- shows how scared of how seen by others- feels like can't cope with adressing compliments by himself- unconfident by himself in social situations unfarmilliar with- needy, sense finds easier to cope beside friend/farmilliar aquantance
  • "wandered around ill at ease among the swirls and eddies of people I didn't know- fear of certain social situations
  • Nick is somewhat of a romantic- dreams of free to fall in love without judgement from society "I liked to walk up fifth avenue and pick out romantic women from the crowd and imagine that in a few minuites I was going to enter their lives, and no one would know or dissaprove"
  • need to be with people a lot+ wish to get married to someone truly loves stems from lonliness feels despite being increasingly surrounded by others- "I felt a haunting lonliness, and I felt it in others too"- birth of empathy towards others "I felt it in others too"- growing empathy when imagines people taking taxis to theatre "I wished them well"
  • he is extremely sensative- "a short affair with a girl who lived in Jersey city", ended coz "her brother began throwing mean looks in my direction"- ended relationship purely based on that, further shows fear about how percieved by society+ overly sensative side- hint wasn't only reason ended, "most affections conceal something eventually even though they don't in the beginning"- queer reading, lonely, slightly heartbroken, need to be honest stem from relationship? cynical
  • Nick is very self aware+ self critical- "I am…


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