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The Great Gatsby - This extract describes the first meeting of Nick Carraway and Tom Buchanan, and we learn about their history.

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The Great Gatsby This extract describes the first meeting of Nick Carraway and Tom Buchanan, and we learn about their history. It is also the first meeting of Nick and Daisy Buchanan, Tom's wife. This is a significant passage as it initiates the idea of something sinister about apparent pureness and a "good dream". We learn that Tom and Nick "scarcely knew" each other, and that they went to New Haven college together. Tom and Daisy live in an "elaborate" and "cheerful" mansion on East Egg. This shows that they have a stable home and money. The house is described as "cheerful", and we therefore assume Tom and Daisy will be cheerful also. When Nick first sees Tom he is "standing with his legs apart on the front porch". This gives an air of arrogance as he standing in a dominant pose when Nick arrives. It appears he wants to emerge in control from the first meeting with Nick. It could also be interpreted as a protective pose, over his house and his wife. The language from the rest of this passage supports with the interpretation that Tom wants to exercise control over Nick, and that he is arrogant and proud of what he has achieved. ...read more.


Therefore, he controls the situation with his "cruel body". Tom exercises control over Nick, manipulating what he sees. He says, "I've got a nice place here". It is normally the visitor that would comment on the house. However, not only does this underline Tom's arrogance, it makes sure that Nick sees the house and notices how "nice" it is. The language such as "turning me around by one arm", "He turned me around again, politely and abruptly" show he is controlling what Nick sees by physically making sure he is positioned to see them. We also meet Daisy, Tom's wife, in this section. The language used includes words such as "fragilely" and "fresh" which is reminiscent of the original American dream that the Dutch sailors see in that last stages of the book as "fresh" and full of hope. The colour white is also linked to Daisy, suggesting a pureness, which mirrors that of America for the Dutch Sailors. When we first read the section where Nick sees Daisy, she initially seems to be like similar pure dream, as the language suggests purity, Daisy and Jordan appear "motionless". ...read more.


Tom is having an affair with Myrtle, and Daisy supposed innocence is stained with a desire for money. Tom's affair and his disregard of his marriage to Daisy can be symbolised by the wedding-cake mentioned in the passage where Nick comments "twisting them up toward the frosted wedding-cake of the ceiling". The frosted wedding cake is now perceived as fake, despite representing something pure. This is again, reminiscent of the Dutch sailors view of America, and the corruption of the original American dream to the modern, corrupted dream. There is evidence to suggest that Nick is taken in by deceptive view of pure and motionless people, such as Gatsby and Daisy. Nick continues to associate with them at various parties etc, and treats them as friends. He romanticises Gatsby throughout the novel, even when Gatsby is murdered and the corrupted underside comes into view. However, Nick is also does not believe every word spoken by Gatsby. He does not believe he is educated at Oxford when Gatsby tells him, and Nick evens finds the un-cut books while at one of Gatsby's parties. It suggests Nick is fully aware of the fake-ness underneath the pure imagery, and is not taken in by it. 989 words Nikki Broadbent ...read more.

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