Theme Of Time In The Great Gatsby

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William Shakespeare once said “Better three hours too soon than a minute too late”. Time is a major role in The Great Gatsby specifically portrayed by Jay Gatsby and his ambition to repeat the past. As Jay looks to erase the past five years of his life, he also looks to strengthen a relationship with the love of his life. Also the setting of The Great Gatsby strictly follows the theme of time and how it affects the characters of the novel. As Jay continues his ill-witted journey of attempting to repeat the past, others are forced to watch in awe as he wonders life blinded by love. Everyone around Jay realized the toll time has taken on their lives, yet Gatsby himself refuses to accept the new role time has played in their lives thus leading…show more content…
Scott Fitzgerald comes from the setting itself. Whether it is the time of day Jay seems to be wandering around or the metaphorical broken clock, time plays an extremely significant role in The Great Gatsby. Jay is seen throughout the novel wondering at various and unworldly times. The last time, however, is his unfortunate demise at two o’clock in the morning with Wilson. “At two o’clock Gatsby put on his bathing suit and left word with the butler that if anyone phoned word was to be brought to him at the pool” (161). This unusual time to swim symbolically represented the wrong time he was living. As his assassination were to take place at the pool due to the far-out time he was acting. Just like the rest of the novel, his obliviousness to see the present led him to lose all he once loved, Daisy. Also , Fitzgerald uses literal time when explaining the old clock that Jay knocked off the mantle. “The clock took this moment to tilt dangerously at the pressure of [Gatsby’s] head” (86). The broken sense of time on the clock mimics the mental state of Jay Gatsby. He is unwilling and unknowing of the present and thus suffers as do the people around him. He fails to see the art of time and this lack of sight ultimately results in his
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