Examples Of Dichotomy In The Great Gatsby

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The Great Gatsby presents us with a dichotomy in the upper class between the nouveau riche of West Egg, the likes of Gatsby, and the established upper class founded on “old money”, represented in East Egg by those such as Tom and Daisy who have inherited a fortune from their predecessors without having gained it through their own labour. Through the Buchanan’s characters Fitzgerald provides us with a social commentary on the “old money” people, presenting them as careless and shallow characters. In doing this Fitzgerald demonstrates the mentality among the East Eggers that not everyone is equal, clearly highlighted by Tom’s disapproval of Gatsby: ““An Oxford man!” He was incredulous. “Like hell he is! He wears a pink suit.”” The fact that …show more content…

“They were careless people, Tom and Daisy” says Fitzgerald. “They smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness … and let other people clean up their mess.” This shows how little they value any life apart from their own, least of all those they are supposed to care about. This is manifested in the relationship between Daisy and Gatsby: Gatsby knows what it’s like to have nothing and to be striving towards a goal and therefore his relationship with Daisy takes on enormous significance; Daisy, on the other hand, has never worked towards anything in her life. She teases Gatsby: “as he left the room she got up and went over to Gatsby, pulling his face down, kissing him on the mouth” and while she is delighted upon being presented with what Gatsby owns, it is by these material things that she is largely driven, with Fitzgerald describing her as having a voice “full of money.” This materialistic tendency is what makes her reluctant to leave Tom and relinquish what she has acquired by marrying him. Through this we can see how the East Eggers are selfish and shallow. Daisy refuses to let go of what Tom has given her and simultaneously allows Gatsby to become a victim of her

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