Chapter 20 Analysis Of The Great Gatsby

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In “Chapter 20” of How to Read Literature Like a Professor, Thomas C. Foster examines the intertextuality of “Sonnet 73” from Shakespeare, “The Book of Ecclesiastes” from The Hebrew Bible, and Hotel du Lac from Anita Brookner, to explain that “for as long as anyone’s been writing anything, the seasons have stood for the same set of meanings” (Foster 186). People believe “that spring has to do with childhood and youth, summer with adulthood and romance and fulfillment and passion, autumn with decline and middle age and tiredness...,” and “winter with old age and resentment and death” (186). In the lyrical novel, The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald applies the seasons of summer and fall to add rich, symbolic meaning to the events that unfold …show more content…

After settling in, Nick contemplates on “the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees,” that “life was beginning over again with the summer” (21). Early on Fitzgerald establishes this particular summer as a symbol of passion, fulfillment, and adulthood in Nick’s attempt to start a new life; however, summer also signals a new life of love and romance for the ambitious protagonist, Jay Gatsby. Fitzgerald's depiction of summer fits perfectly with Gatsby’s agenda of throwing lavish, fancy parties “through the summer nights,” to attract his love interest, Daisy Buchanan (47). On the other hand, summer also creates an overwhelming, suffocating heat that causes characters to change internally. As the climax rises in “Chapter Seven” of The Great Gatsby, Nick begins to feel the “relentless beating heat” suffocating him in the “large and stifling” room at the Plaza Hotel (111). Throughout the chapter, the literal and figurative summer heat creates uneasiness and tension between Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, and her husband, Tom Buchanan. Thomas C. Foster clarifies that every writer can create “modifications in his or her use of the seasons,” and how summer can “be warm and rich,” or “hot and stifling” (Foster 188). In The Great Gatsby, summer plays a significant role in contrasting passion, love, lust, and heat in the thoughts and actions of the main

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