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Flaws Of Perception In Society Essay

1092 words - 5 pages

Throughout The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Wife of Bath’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer, and Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, there is an interconnecting theme of the flaws of perception in society. This theme is shown with various characters throughout The Great Gatsby such as characters having their own perception as to who the main character, Jay Gatsby is, in The Wife of Bath’s Tale it is shown in the way of how the knight judges his wife based off of her physical age and beauty within, and in Brave New World, Bernard, one of the main characters, is in shock of what the reality of this “utopian” society everyone believes they live in actually is, he sees how messed up everything ...view middle of the document...

The way that different characters in the novel hold individual perceptions of Jay Gatsby is similar to the way our society has different perceptions about people groups and other topics. The characters in The Great Gatsby create different backstories of Gatsby, and show how ‘the grapevine’ is a more common way to find out information about somebody than meeting and talking with them. Society is very similar in that people have a tendency to gossip about others, creating false perceptions of others. When people rely on ‘the grapevine’ for information, a divide between people is created that only gets larger as more stories are told. This divide can be created between two persons, or even two people groups, where the situation becomes worse as more people are included.
One of the main themes from The Wife of Bath’s Tale is the perception of what true beauty is. In the tale, a knight is being tried for death after lustfully raping a women. The queen, the one running this sentence, instead presents him a challenge. If, within one year, he can discover what women want most in the world and report his findings back to the court, he will keep his life. He searched for a year and the day was drawing near to when he needed to answer to the queen. That is when he met an ugly old women, who in fact, had the answer to save his life. He then promises to help her with whatever it is she request of him. Once the knight is sure to live, the old women announced to the crowd that she requests that he marry her, the knight is disgusted, and requests that she asks for anything besides marriage. “Alas! Old lady, by the Lord / I know indeed that such was my behest, / But for God’s love think of a new request, / Take all my goods, but leave my body free” (Chaucer pg. 187 li. 234-237). He is ashamed of his new wife because he does not find her beautiful in his eyes. “You’re old, and so abominably plain” (Chaucer pg. 188 li. 276-279), he tells her, pointing out the different attributes that make her undesirable to him. She then...

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