The Great Gatsby Narrator Questions…

How does Fitzgerald paint Nick as a narrator? What quality (or qualities) is he given? 

Fitzgerald makes Nick seem like a very structured and a sensible man. Everything that Nick says has meaning to it and a purpose, therefore Nick is a very meaningful character in this novel. Fitzgerald also makes him seem very aware, this is because Nick is aware of everything that is going around him and he can see that Gatsby and his life is an illusion. Nick is very unlike the other characters because he is represented as being a non judgemental person unlike others like Daisy and Tom (etc), and he does not live in this materialistic world of money and status.Nick learns these great qualities from his dad, and a quote that represents this idea is: “Whenever you feel like criticising any one,” he told me, “just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.” This quote represent Nick very well because this a quote that he ives by throughout the novel. 

The Great Gatsby Chapter Four…

Fitzgerald tries to achieve an illusion which gives the reader a sense of the type of people who come to Gatsby’s parties.The majority of guest are rich and have little or no interest in Gatsby or his life. Fitzgerald generally describes the guests as self-absorbed and only interested in the party, a quote that represents this  idea is : “the people came like moths to the flame”. Another reason why the guest list is listed is to show that Gatsby invites all these higher class people to the party so it will support Gatsby’s delusion of being one of the wealthy and important people in the New York social society of that time.

The Great Gatsby Chapter Three…

David Belasco 

BORN: July 25th 1853 (San Fransisco, America) —Died : May 14th 1931

David Belasco was born in San Francisco, Calif, on July 22, 1853. He was educated in a monastery, which may have prompted the quasi-clerical garb he wore in later life—a style that earned him the name “the Bishop of Broadway.” He fled the monastery and joined a circus. By the age of 12 he was an actor on the San Francisco stage and had begun writing plays. In the following few years he joined companies barnstorming through the mining camps. In Virginia City, Nev., he served as secretary to Dion Boucicault, who inspired Belasco to try playwriting again. From 1873 to 1881 he was associated with several San Francisco theaters. His first play to attract attention was a collaborative effort with James A. Herne, Hearts of Oak. At 29 Belasco left for New York City, having acted more than 170 roles and written or adapted more than 100 plays.

His first position in New York was as a stagemanager of the Madison Square Theater. In 1886 he became dissatisfied and joined the Frohmans as stage manager and house playwright. In 1890 he became an independent producer; his first real success was his own The Heart of Maryland, a melodrama inspired by the poem “Curfew Must Not Ring Tonight.” Belasco took unknowns and turned them into stars. The first of these, Leslie Carter, had suffered through a sensational divorce. Penniless, a social outcast, she came to Belasco, who trained her and then stared her in Maryland. It played for three seasons and was then taken to London.

During the 1890s the Theatrical Syndicate gained control of the theatrical world and people who refused to join found themselves with no theaters. In Washington, D.C., Belasco was forced to rent the barnlike Convention Hall, leaky roof and all, for his production of Andrea with Carter. During the fourth act there was a violent rainstorm, and the audience observed the play from under their umbrellas. In 1902 Belasco gained control of the Republic Theater in New York. In 1906 he began work on a new building on West 44th Street, which eventually became the Belasco Theater.

In addition to Carter, Belasco elevated David Warfield (a vaudeville entertainer), Lenore Ulric, Frances Starr, and Blanche Bates to stardom. Most of these stars had natural ability, but Belasco was also a master at handling publicity campaigns. Certainly Carter’s past was in part responsible for her success. Belasco also preferred to work with unknown playwrights. He collaborated with John Luther Long to write Andrea, Madam Butterfly, and Darling of the Gods; and with Henry C. DeMille on Lord Chumley and The Wife, among others. Madam Butterfly and Belasco’s own The Girl of the Golden West were later adapted as the librettos for the Puccini operas.

Belasco claimed to have been associated with the production of nearly 400 plays, most of them written or adapted by himself; but his writing, in a time when Ibsen, Strindberg, and Chekhov were introducing realism, remained filled with sensational melodrama or maudlin sentiment. His plays have almost no lasting value. His advances in realism were in technical aspects of theater; his settings were correct to minute detail, for and not recreate a specific setting he preferred to buy it and then move it on stage. He particularly excelled in spectacular effect and in amazing mechanical contrivances. In lighting, he pioneered the use of colour silks and gelatin slides, loving to create “real” sunsets. Also, in a day when productions were hurriedly put together, Belasco took time to perfect his work; even his most severe critics admit a “tidiness” not often found on the American stage. He excelled in creating a mood and tension in his crowd and mob scenes. Moreover, whatever was seen on stage was Belasco and the other artists were the instruments of his will. He died in New York on May 14, 1931.

The Great Gatsby Chapter Two…

  • Explore one way that Fitzgerald presents ‘illusion’ in this chapter, you need to use evidence to support your idea

Illusion is shown throughout different ways in chapter two and one of them is that Myrtle changes her dress before the party begins. This is because Myrtle is a lower class person who tries to look like an upper class person by wearing an “elaborate afternoon dress of coloured chiffon”. Myrtle also has a secret affair with Tom Buchanan, although she already has a hard-working husband: Wilson.The reason that  Myrtle is attracted to Tom  because of his status and wealth, which Wilson does not have.To Myrtle, status and money is more important because she is desperate to improve her life.This is an illusion because Myrtle and Tom both use each other to get away from their real lives and stay with each other for bit to see what their lives could potentially be like, although they both know that it is never going to become reality for them because their relationship is built on materialism. Another illusion that is shown in chapter 2 is “The eyes of Doctor T. J. Ellenburg are blue and gigantic — their irises are one yard high.” Tom, Gatsby, Daisy and all the other rich people are tricked into thinking that the sign is watching how much money they make because the eyes symbolise the growing commercialism of America. Life in America in 1920’s was all about making money,  as shown by the wealth of people like Tom.This is an illusion because they compare this billboard to god. Where as the truth is ‘gods’ empty eyes are used to represent him watching over people who have abandoned their spiritual values to achieve material wealth and status.

The Great Gatsby Chapter One…

  • What was the advice given to Nick by his father? How, do you suppose, this makes him a good person to tell this story?

The advice that Nick’s father gave him is …”Whenever you feel like criticising anyone… just remember that all the people in this world have not had the same advantages that you’ve had.”This makes him a good person to tell the story because he is less judgmental than everybody else.

  • How is West Egg different from East Egg? Which do you think you would rather live in and why?

West Egg is ‘new’ money and East Egg is ‘old’ money; meaning that the people who live in East Egg inherited their money and people who live in West Egg earned their money.I would rather live in the East Egg because that way I would have already inherited my money and being a female in that century it would be better to live in the ‘old’ area.

  • If you were going to pick one colour to connect with Daisy Buchanan, what colour would it be? Explain your reasoning.

I would pick white because she is ,bland, fake, she is lacking in true friends, happiness and the real meaning of life. All of Daisy’s relationships  are based on the idea of wealth and class  but not personality or who the other person truly is. I would also pick white because white isn’t actually a colour it is a tone and Daisy isn’t real, she is fake.

  • We find out that Tom has “some woman in New York.” What unflattering feature of Jordan Baker’s personality is revealed in this scene?

She is noisy, needs to know what is going on and likes to get in on the gossip. 

  • The green light that Gatsby is staring at will become an important symbol in the book. What symbolic associations do you connect to the colour green?

The colour green represents hope.It represents Gatsby’s thoughts because he still has hope to find Daisy and fall in love with her and be happy together. Green can also represent growth, harmony and balance. When Gatsby looks at the green light it symbolises growth for him, and how much he has changed and improved  since he was young.