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The Importance Of Sexuality In The Great Gatsby

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In classrooms all across America, high school students have spent time analyzing and learning from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. They spend an excess of time examining the relationships between Nick and people he surrounds himself with. However, most often teachers and students conveniently skip over a glaring detail: Nick’s sexuality. The Great Gatsby is believed to be heavily influenced by Fitzgerald’s life, including, perhaps, his struggle with his own sexuality. In examining events in Fitzgerald’s life, as well as evidence from The Great Gatsby, there is more than meets the eye. Throughout the book, there are number of instances to suggest Nick is not straight. He seems totally unconcerned with women, but is oddly fascinated with Gatsby. Fitzgerald’s often flowery writing and Nick’s somewhat excessive descriptions of the people around him can be an indication of something deeper. In the first chapter, Nick attends a dinner and the reader is first introduced to Tom, Daisy, and Jordan Baker. He describes Daisy’s voice in detail, a murmur that “was only to make people lean toward her” (9), and describes Miss Baker in a paragraph that, if not for a comment on her “erect carriage” (11) could have been written about anyone of any gender. Contrast these descriptions with Nick’s summary of Tom. He describes Tom as a “sturdy, straw haired man of thirty with a rather hard mouth and a supercilious manner… Not even the effeminate swank of his riding clothes could hide
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