Character Analysis Of F. Scott Fitzgerald's 'The Great Gatsby'

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F. Scott Fitzgerald portrays the character of Daisy Buchanan as a woman born into a wealthy ‘old-money’ family, where she’s a victim of traditional values that must be upheld. Daisy comes across as helpless and childlike possibly due to her sheltered upbringing. On the other hand, she is materialistic, insincere, and deceptive. Daisy commits a violent crime without acknowledgment or remorse. She comes across as somebody who is devoid of real emotion; she allows Gatsby to pay the ultimate price for her wrong doings and fails to show an ounce of gratitude in his wake. Fitzgerald paints Daisy both as a victim and a villain and her character can be paralleled with his actual wife, Zelda Sayre, who was also from a wealthy background, highly materialistic and suffered from schizophrenia.

In the opening chapter of ‘The Great Gatsby’ we are introduced to The Buchanans and get a real sense of what their life and marriage is like. They are extremely wealthy, which allows Daisy to live the life she is accustomed to – as a lady of leisure. Her life is so leisurely that she remarks to her guests, “I always watch for the longest day of the year and then miss it.” (Chapter One). On suggestion of celebration, Daisy then turns to Nick Carraway, ‘helplessly’ and says “What’ll we plan?...What do people plan?” (Chapter one). This gives the impression that she has
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In all probability Daisy would have watched her mother play the role of the good wife, a role she herself would be expected to play and a role her daughter would be anticipated to play too. Women of that time would’ve been seen and not heard, their husbands’ infidelities were not challenged, and to leave your husband would have been far more scandalous. Daisy is a victim of the cultural norms of that time, in that she was born a female, and her learned helplessness is a result of her own family life, watching and learning from her
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