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Gatsby, FS. Fitzgerald, 1925 p.62-63
This passage is an excerpt from Fitzgerald's famous novel The Great Gatsby, written in 1925. The novel is a first-person narrative in which Nick Carraway, Gatsby's neighbor, relates the meeting he arranged between two former lovers, namely Gatsby and Daisy. The scene we are about to present is the result of a complicated arrangement in which Nick plays arelatively passive role. Throughout the passage, the conflicting emotions that overwhelm Gatsby and Daisy well emphasize that their feelings for each other are not neutral.
The extract can be divided into three parts. The first part, from line 1 to 15, can be entitled "waiting for Daisy". The second part, from line 16 to 46 is the description of Gatsby’s exquisite house. The last part, from line 47to the end, can be called the display of wealth.
At the beginning of the passage the action is located at Nick's place. The first part starts with the narrator's inner thoughts on the state of his towels. They're probably dirty since he is ashamed at the idea Daisy could use them. Indeed, she ­has just gone upstairs. From this comment, we understand that Nick has a more modest house thanGatsby. It creates a gap between the two men and emphasized by the distant relationship they have. The two men represent 2 different worlds. On the one hand Gatsby is the rich and corrupted host and on the other hand, Nick is the modest and honest guest.
While Daisy is in the bathroom, Nick and Gatsby engage in a conversation which is triggered by the view they have on Gatsby's magnificent mansion. Theconversation focuses on Gatsby's fortune. But Nick and the readers do not learn much; indeed the source of his fortune remains veiled in mystery. Before, he told Nick that he had inherited his money and now he tells him that it took him three years to build his fabulous manor. Even though he immediately explains that he went bankrupt during the war and he rebuilt his fortune from scratch, thereader can't help but thinking that Gatsby is contradicting himself and that he is making up an explanation in order to remain credible. Gatsby is a very enigmatic character. We don't really know where he comes from and we are under the impression he wants to keep it secret, blurry.
Then on line 15, Gatsby's cryptic question further arouses our interest (I quote «do you mean you've been thinkingover what 1 proposed the other night"). We are led to wonder what he may have offered him; perhaps a partnership in one of his mysterious companies? However we shall never get the answer since Nick is prevented from answering by Daisy’s luminous arrival on the scene (as emphasized by the play on light in her clothes, line 16-17). The three of them then head towards Gatsby’s exquisite mansion.Gatsby definitely wants his dwelling to prove his tremendous wealth and indeed the medieval silhouette, the Marie-Antoinette salons, the Restoration rooms and the other gaudy details add to the impression of immense fortune he wishes to convey. Gatsby shows off and pays particular attention to all the details: they do not take the short cut, but they "went down the road and entered by the big postern"(1. 23-24). He also "drank a glass of Chartreuse he took from a cupboard in the wall" (1. 39). This French beverage accentuates the refined atmosphere ad character Gatsby creates.
Daisy is really impressed when visiting Gatsby's house. She certainly did not expect to see such a display of luxury. She sounds enthusiastic at first ("1 love if', 1. 20, "with enchanted murmurs Daisy admired",1.24), but we have the impression that she is jealous and envious of his new situation.
Moreover, the succession of empty rooms transforms the house into a sort of museum. The reader does not have the feeling that someone lives in the house, but that the house is a display of nice furniture that Gatsby never uses. The description of the house,-through narrator’s eyes", highlights the notion of...
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