Suspicious Files from  East & West Egg (circa 1922)

                                           
                                                    
Dossier                                

 

Nick Carraway-

A young man (he turns thirty during the course of the novel), Nick travels to New York in 1922 to learn the bond business.  He lives in the West Egg district of Long Island, next door to Jay Gatsby.  Nick is also Daisy's cousin, which enables him to observe and assist the resurgence of the love affair between Daisy and Gatsby.  He is tolerant, open-minded, quiet, and a good listener, and, as a result, others tend to talk to him and tell him their secrets.  Gatsby, in particular, comes to trust him and treats him as a confidant.  He evidences a strongly mixed reaction to life on the East Coast, one that creates a powerful internal conflict that he does not resolve until the end of the book.  On the one hand, he is attracted to the fast-paced, fun-driven lifestyle of New York.  Even though he finds that lifestyle grotesque and damaging.  Nick states that there is a “quality of distortion” to life in New York, and this lifestyle makes him lose his equilibrium, especially early in the novel, as when he gets drunk at Gatsby's party.  This inner conflict is symbolized throughout the book by Nick's romantic affair with Jordan Baker.  He is attracted to her vivacity and her sophistication just as he is repelled by her dishonesty and her lack of consideration for other people.  After witnessing the unraveling of Gatsby's dream and presiding over the appalling spectacle of Gatsby's funeral, Nick realizes that the fast life of revelry on the East Coast is a cover for the terrifying moral emptiness that the valley of ashes symbolizes.  Having gained the maturity that this insight demonstrates, he goes back to Minnesota in search of a quieter life structured by more traditional moral values.
 


Jordan Baker-

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Jay Gatsby-

Normal 0 21 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} Gatsby is a young man, around thirty years old, who rose from an impoverished childhood in rural North Dakota to become fabulously wealthy.  However, he achieved this lofty goal by participating in organized crime, including distributing illegal alcohol and trading in stolen securities.  From his early youth, Gatsby despised poverty and longed for wealth and sophistication.  He dropped out of College after only two weeks because he could not bear the job with which he was paying his tuition.  Though Gatsby has always wanted to be rich, his main motivation in acquiring his fortune was his love for Daisy Buchanan, whom he met as a young military officer in Louisville before leaving to fight in World War I in 1917.  Gatsby immediately fell in love with Daisy's aura of luxury, grace, and charm, and lied to her about his own background in order to convince her that he was good enough for her.  Daisy promised to wait for him when he left for the war, but married Tom Buchanan in 1919, while Gatsby was studying at Oxford after the war in an attempt to gain an education.  From that moment on, Gatsby dedicated himself to winning Daisy back, and his acquisition of millions of dollars.  He purchased a gaudy mansion on West Egg, and his lavish weekly parties are all merely means to that end.  He is the subject of a whirlwind of gossip throughout New York.  



Daisy Buchanan-

Normal 0 21 false false false MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 st1\:*{behavior:url(#ieooui) } /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} Daisy Fay Buchanan is originally from a good family in Louisville, Kentucky.  She is Nick Carraway’s 2nd cousin once removed.  After marrying Tom Buchanan, a very rich man, she moves to East Egg, Long Island.  She is the mother of a little girl.  Daisy is a woman who likes to play with men, she loves to exaggerate and extemporize.  Most men are fascinated by her, and Daisy enjoys being the center of attention.  She also hopes to be liked and popular among the men around her.  She wants to impress men including Gatsby by using sophisticated language.  She, for example, says: "The pompadour! You never told me you had a pompadour – or a yacht."  Daisy promises more than she gives and oftentimes does not tell the truth.  She has a strong desire for love.  Mainly for this reason she married Tom, instead of Gatsby.  Since she did not know if Gatsby was to come back from Oxford, she did not want to wait for him any longer.  Wanting to be loved is a reason for her superficial behavior and why everything about her is just not real.  Especially with Daisy knowing about her husband's infidelity.  Daisy says about herself: "I'm pretty cynical about everything."  You can see that she does not really love her husband Tom and is not happy because of her near divorce from Tom.  “Sometimes she gets foolish ideas in her head and doesn’t know what she’s doing.”  Furthermore Daisy is careless person which you can see in her behavior when she has the hit-and-run accident in which Myrtle Wilson, Tom's mistress, is killed.  Being used to getting young men's attention, she has learned to think only of herself no matter whether other people get hurt or not.  Another reason for marrying Tom rather than Gatsby is because material things have a great importance to her. Tom was the one who bought her love with a $300,000 necklace.  He can give her all the luxury Daisy needs for living.  Even her voice “is full of money.”  Nick says that Daisy's voice "couldn't be over-dreamed."  Her voice is "a deathless song."


Quick References

http://www.geocities.com/andrew_dilling/

http://etext.library.adelaide.edu.au/f/fitzgerald/f_scott/gatsby/

By: Matt Stone

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