Saturday, June 1, 2013

The Great Gatsby: to go back in time

Chapter VI Notes:

Photo by Mike Taylor
Gatsby tells his story (to Nick): his legal name is James Gatz; “He sprang from his Platonic conception of himself”; he invented himself: Jay Gatsby.  He worked for a man, Dan Cody, and sailed with him for five years until Cody died.  What he learned during that time was that he was left with a suitable education; “the vague contour of Jay Gatsby had filed out to the substantiality of a man.”

Now Nick knows that those wild rumors about his background are not true.

One day Tom Buchanan comes upon Gatsby's property.  Tom’s presence affects Gatsby, until Gatsby gains the upper hand.  He tells him that he knows Daisy, and this makes Tom very uncomfortable. 

Strangely, Tom reluctantly brings Daisy to one of Gatsby’s parties, and the environment appalls Daisy, while Tom is still seething with envy and suspicion over Gatsby.  After Tom and Daisy leave, Gatsby tells Nick that he knows Daisy did not like his party. Did he think he could impress her with his wealth?  Maybe.

It is Gatsby’s wish to just turn back time to five years ago when he first wanted to marry Daisy and start all over again.  Nick is sure that he cannot have things the same way again.  The past is the Past.

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