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Symbolism Essay

832 words - 4 pages

Secrets, lies, and deception are what wind through this classic. In The Great Gatsby, it starts with knowing one thing and then learning about another that contradicts the first. With the mystery behind every action and the roles all the symbols play, The Great Gatsby can teach a lot to a reader. The most that is taught comes from two great symbols, the eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg and Owl Eyes.
These two symbols help to relay a main part of the plot in this classic. With all the secrets being kept and all the deception being played, something, or someone, has to know the truth. Referenced in the movie, as well as in the book, the eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg see everything. The book hints at this when it states the characters driving “along the road under Doctor Eckleburg’s persistent stare” (Fitzgerald 23). The billboard’s eyes were always watching. In everything that Tom, Nick, Daisy, or Gatsby did, the eyes saw what really happened. Nothing could be hidden from them. Throughout the movie, the billboard would be flashed to after a dramatic scene that developed another secret to the plot. By doing this, the message that they see everything was put into our head. It was our truth to go off of and is a figure of God who sees all. But, God wasn’t the only one that saw all that happened.
When we meet Owl Eyes, we get a different impression. Nick describes him as “a stout, middle-aged man, with enormous owl-eyed spectacles” (Fitzgerald 45). An owl is known as the wisest of the animals. When compared to an owl, the assumption is made that he may have other qualities besides just appearance. As in the movie, we see that Owl Eyes actually sees the affair Gatsby and Daisy are having. Though it’s not told as plainly in the book as it was in the movie, fogging the theme slightly, we get the impression that he may have known more then he let on. This is strengthened by the ending, in both the movie and the book, when Owl Eyes came to Gatsby’s funeral. Owl Eyes must have known more than what we saw because Nick states “I don’t know how he knew about the funeral or even his name” (Fitzgerald 175-176). He was the only one that showed up to the funeral besides Nick and Gatsby’s...

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