Historical context[ edit ] Set on the prosperous Long Island ofThe Great Gatsby provides a critical social history of America during the Roaring Twenties within its fictional narrative. Today, there are a number of theories as to which mansion was the inspiration for the book. Fitzgerald is also similar to Jay Gatsby in that he fell in love while stationed far from home in the military and fell into a life of decadence trying to prove himself to the girl he loved.
As the story opens, Nick has just moved from the Midwest to West Egg, Long Island, seeking his fortune as a bond salesman. Shortly after his arrival, Nick travels across the Sound to the more fashionable East Egg to visit his cousin Daisy Buchanan and her husband, Tom, a hulking, imposing man whom Nick had known in college.
There he meets professional golfer Jordan Baker. The Buchanans and Jordan Baker live privileged lives, contrasting sharply in sensibility and luxury with Nick's more modest and grounded lifestyle.
When Nick returns home that evening, he notices his neighbor, Gatsby, mysteriously standing in the dark and stretching his arms toward the water, and a solitary green light across the Sound. One day, Nick is invited to accompany Tom, a blatant adulterer, to meet his mistress, Myrtle Wilson, a middle-class woman whose husband runs a modest garage and gas station in the valley of ashes, a desolate and run-down section of town that marks the convergence of the city and the suburbs.
After the group meets and journeys into the city, Myrtle phones friends to come over and they all spend the afternoon drinking at Myrtle and Tom's apartment. The afternoon is filled with drunken behavior and ends ominously with Myrtle and Tom fighting over Daisy, his wife.
Drunkenness turns to rage and Tom, in one deft movement, breaks Myrtle's nose. Following the description of this incident, Nick turns his attention to his mysterious neighbor, who hosts weekly parties for the rich and fashionable. Upon Gatsby's invitation which is noteworthy because rarely is anyone ever invited to Gatsby's parties — they just show up, knowing they will not be turned awayNick attends one of the extravagant gatherings.
There, he bumps into Jordan Baker, as well as Gatsby himself. Gatsby, it turns out, is a gracious host, but yet remains apart from his guest — an observer more than a participant — as if he is seeking something.
As the party winds down, Gatsby takes Jordan aside to speak privately. Although the reader isn't specifically told what they discuss, Jordan is greatly amazed by what she's learned. As the summer unfolds, Gatsby and Nick become friends and Jordan and Nick begin to see each other on a regular basis, despite Nick's conviction that she is notoriously dishonest which offends his sensibilities because he is "one of the few honest people" he has ever met.
Nick and Gatsby journey into the city one day and there Nick meets Meyer Wolfshiem, one of Gatsby's associates and Gatsby's link to organized crime. On that same day, while having tea with Jordan Baker, Nick learns the amazing story that Gatsby told her the night of his party.
Gatsby, it appears, is in love with Daisy Buchanan. They met years earlier when he was in the army but could not be together because he did not yet have the means to support her. In the intervening years, Gatsby made his fortune, all with the goal of winning Daisy back.
He bought his house so that he would be across the Sound from her and hosted the elaborate parties in the hopes that she would notice.
It has come time for Gatsby to meet Daisy again, face-to-face, and so, through the intermediary of Jordan Baker, Gatsby asks Nick to invite Daisy to his little house where Gatsby will show up unannounced. The day of the meeting arrives.
Nick's house is perfectly prepared, due largely to the generosity of the hopeless romantic Gatsby, who wants every detail to be perfect for his reunion with his lost love. When the former lovers meet, their reunion is slightly nervous, but shortly, the two are once again comfortable with each other, leaving Nick to feel an outsider in the warmth the two people radiate.
As the afternoon progresses, the three move the party from Nick's house to Gatsby's, where he takes special delight in showing Daisy his meticulously decorated house and his impressive array of belongings, as if demonstrating in a very tangible way just how far out of poverty he has traveled.
At this point, Nick again lapses into memory, relating the story of Jay Gatsby. Born James Gatz to "shiftless and unsuccessful farm people," Gatsby changed his name at seventeen, about the same time he met Dan Cody.
Cody would become Gatsby's mentor, taking him on in "a vague personal capacity" for five years as he went three times around the Continent.
By the time of Cody's death, Gatsby had grown into manhood and had defined the man he would become. Never again would he acknowledge his meager past; from that point on, armed with a fabricated family history, he was Jay Gatsby, entrepreneur.This flashcard set covers information about the characters in the novel The Great Gatsby by F.
Scott Fitzgerald. The world Fitzgerald creates is elaborate and complicated, and the characters that. A short summary of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. This free synopsis covers all the crucial plot points of The Great Gatsby. The Great Gatsby is a novel written by American author F.
Scott Fitzgerald that follows a cast of characters living in the fictional towns of West Egg and East Egg . Watch video · F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Books 'This Side of Paradise' () This Side of Paradise is a largely autobiographical story about love and greed.
The . The Great Gatsby is a novel written by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald that follows a cast of characters living in the fictional town of West and East Egg . The Great Gatsby Homework Help Questions.
In F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, who is the villian? In F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, I find that Tom and Daisy are the villains.