The Great Gatsby: Literary Analysis Essay

978 words - 4 pages


Abuse! Betrayal! Deception! These words read like a headline in The National Enquirer. However, the words denote connotations woven through the pages of Scott
Fitzgerald’s novel, The Great Gatsby. The voice of Nick Carraway, chronicles the summer of 1922 that transpires in the vicinity of Long Island, New York. This locale is divided into the East Egg, populated by those with old money and the West Egg, inhabited by those with new money. The pursuit of money and pleasure mark this era and far exceed the pursuit of more noble goals. The interactions of Nick Carraway, Jay Gatsby, Daisy and Tom Buchanan and Myrtle and George Wilson propel the novel and reveal them as ...view middle of the document...

After warning Myrtle not to mention Daisy’s name, she ignores the warning and does it anyway. “Daisy! Daisy! Daisy!” she shouted. “I’ll say it whenever I want to! Daisy! Dai-.” (Fitzgerald, 37) Then with no hesitation, Tom hits Myrtle with his open hand and breaks her nose.
Whereas abuse is evident in Tom, like others in the novel, he is furthermore guilty of betrayal. Tom’s unfaithfulness to Daisy in his affair with Myrtle Wilson represents one of the greatest betrayals. It is especially dishonorable because it is known by others like Jordan Baker, who informs Nick of this discretion, when Tom gets a phone call during lunch. Jordan Baker tells him, “Tom’s got some woman in New York.” (Fitzgerald, 15) Eventually, Daisy betrays Tom in an affair with Gatsby. Ironically, Tom finds no fault with his own extramarital affair, but he feels like a victim when he discovers this. “His mouth opened a little and he looked at Gatsby and then back at Daisy as if he had just
recognized her as someone he knew a long time ago.” (Fitzgerald, 119) Daisy engaged in an earlier betrayal of Gatsby when she didn’t wait for his return from War I and married Tom Buchanan. She further betrays him when Gatsby dies and she doesn’t even bother coming to the funeral. Of course, Myrtle victimizes George with her betrayal in her affair with Tom.
Equally as rampant as sharing in abuse and betrayal, there is also participation in deception. Many of their relationships manifest themselves in dishonesty with each other, and with themselves. The deception by Jay, Daisy and Tom result in many problems, once the truth is revealed. The narrator’s description of Jay Gatsby’s honesty is disproved when the truth of who he is and how he earned his money is revealed. When Nick asked...

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