• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Great Gatsby. Comment on the setting and the depiction of the characters in Chapter 2

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Comment on the setting and the depiction of the characters in Chapter 2 extract. In the second chapter of ?The Great Gatsby?, Fitzgerald introduced a new setting, the ?valley of ashes? to the novel. Unlike other settings of the book which is often linked to wealth and prosperity, the ?valley of ashes? is a depiction of poverty and desolation. This can be seen by the Fitzgerald?s description of the place itself as ?a fantastic farm where ashes grow like wheat into ridges and hills and grotesque gardens?. The setting itself also reflects on the heavy pollution which is evidently a consequence of capitalism, the so-called American way of living. This further delves into the era of the book whereby the industrial revolution played a huge role in the capitalist economies. The use of phrases such as ?powdery air?, ?ash-grey men? and ?impenetrable cloud? portrays the high degree of pollution within the setting itself. The setting is also the home to the only poor characters in the novel. ...read more.

Middle

As result, it reflects on the fading connection men had with God before and how the role of religion within the society of the 1920s was slowly rotting away. The second chapter also introduced two new characters, Myrtle Wilson and George Wilson. The depiction of the characters within the passage was based on Nick?s observations and perspectives. His lack of judgment in his observation gave the readers the confidence and trust to believe Nick?s retrospective view of the characters. This gave the narration a more omniscient effect to it. However, in his depiction of characters there was a hint of unreliability to it. Nick says ?I think?? shows uncertainty in his observations, which projects his narration as slightly imperfect. George Wilson was depicted by Nick Carraway as ?a blond, spiritless man, anaemic and faintly handsome?. He worked as an automobile mechanic working in a garage in the ?valley of ashes?. As a character, he represents desolation and poverty unlike Tom Buchanan who exudes wealth and power. ...read more.

Conclusion

Nick mentioned that ‘he’d tanked up a good deal at luncheon and his determination to have [Nick’s] company bordered on violence’. This illustrates Tom as a person who would resort to violence to achieve what he wants. Tom was also clearly revealed to be unashamed about his infidelity through his nonchalant actions and speech to George Wilson calling him ‘old man’ and ‘slapping him jovially on the shoulder’. He ‘intently’ states ‘I want to see you... Get on the next train’ shows the blatancy of the affair. His actions and speech amplifies his arrogant attitude. This practically symbolizes the so-called immorality and moral decadence hidden beneath the façade of the aristocrats in the society. In conclusion, the passage above introduces the setting and indirectly portrays the moral decay within the social hierarchy. The moral decay is further exemplified by Tom Buchanan’s portrayal in a negative light. The setting also shows the social gap between the affluent and the desolate. The portrayal of the relations between Tom Buchanan and George Wilson reinforces the idea of the less wealthy being controlled by the affluent. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate World Literature section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate World Literature essays

  1. Extended Essay - A Dream Deferred Both Jay Gatsby from The Great Gatsby and ...

    George also tells Lennie about how they are not like all of the other people with dreams of their own because "We got a future. We got somebody to talk to that gives a damn about us. We don't have to sit in no bar room blowin' in our jack jus' because we got no place else to go.

  2. Comparison of Violence in The Catcher in the Rye with Their Eyes Were Watching ...

    Whereas in the beginning of the novel Janie was relatively calm and passive, it comes at this point where her foreshadowed ?hurricane? arrives. Beforehand, Tea Cake had taught Janie how to shoot with a gun, another sign towards her characterization of a woman accepting the violence of the world.

  1. To What Extent is The Sound of Waves a Good Depiction of the Genre ...

    This was very much the case in Shinji?s situation. The only reason Shinji and Hatsue were destined to be star-crossed lovers was because their social statuses are not favourable. Shinji is poor with an elderly mother and younger brother to take care of while Hatsue is the daughter of the wealthy Terukichi.

  2. How Setting is used in "The Great Gatsby" to show moral decay.

    The behavior of Myrtle Wilson further affirms the class divide apparent between the Wilsons and Tom. She is very subservient when it comes to interacting with Tom and even looks at him? flush him in the eye?. In contrary, he ?[walks] through [George Wilson] as if he were a ghost?.

  1. Commentary on Setting in "The Great Gatsby" Chapter 2

    ?only car visible was the dust-covered wreck of a Ford which crouched in a dim corner? this showed that the garage does not have any frequent customers and that the last someone wanted to buy a car was a long time ago as the car was covered in a layer of dust.

  2. Great Gatsby

    Wilson is an example of how living in a world without morals can affect people. A meaningful quote in the story is, ?God knows what you?ve been doing, everything you?ve been doing. You may fool me, but you can?t fool God? (159)!

  1. Moods, colors and people of the deep blue sea are portrayed in The Sound ...

    ?Paths by hill and shore, glimpses of harbors, cliffs, and summer trees.?(l.277,b.XII) 228. ?It is an island all distinct, or part of the fertile mainland, slopping to the sea??(297,b.XII) 229. ?Far away in Krete i learned of Ithaka- in that broad island over the great ocean.?(l.326,b.XII)

  2. In the Great Gatsby, there are many lies that are told throughout the story

    After the outburst in the hotel, Daisy had to choose between Gatsby and Tom. Stuck in the situation Daisy started having mixed emotions and believed that she was stable enough to go out for a drive with Gatsby. On their drive a woman (Myrtle)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work