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Miss Lugo
12-01-2005, 04:43 AM
In the beginning of the book, Nick describes Gastby as 'turning out alright in the end.' What does he mean, exactly??

The Unnamable
12-18-2005, 07:56 PM
Remember that he says he ‘disapproved of him’ at first. By the end of the novel, although Gatsby is dead, he is, according to Nick (and the reader if he has any capacity to think and feel), “worth the whole damn bunch of them”.

Automagic
01-04-2006, 10:23 PM
Gatsby is the only decent, selfless resident of either eggs (save Nick). His obvious wealth is product of his desire for Daisy, not for reasons of self-indulgence. Had Daisy not turned down his love during their early days together, Gatsby would not have had to impress ANYONE by gaining riches. To this, Nick associates a selfless and innocent act to not impress the general society, but to appeal to Daisy's greed and shallowness (and no, his parties are not to impress guests, but are actually thrown in vain hope that Daisy might wander into one of them)

My thoughts are that maybe Nick assumes that because Gatsby's life story is so fabricated and falsified by rumor, Gatsby might be not such a heroic figure. But because Nick eventually learns the reasoning behind Gatsby's quest for riches (just for LOVE, not self-indulgence), Gatsby sure enough turns out to be "worth the whole damn buch put together."

Diceman
01-05-2006, 10:20 AM
Gatsby sure enough turns out to be "worth the whole damn buch put together."

I don't disagree - but really, how can one feel any sympathy for a bloke who'd go to such great lengths for the sake of that shallow bint?

To my mind Gatsby could have been so much more, a real person, had his vision not been clouded by one as worthless as Daisy.

TGG to me is the story of how pursuit of fantasy can ruin a man.

The Unnamable
01-06-2006, 08:21 AM
I don't disagree - but really, how can one feel any sympathy for a bloke who'd go to such great lengths for the sake of that shallow bint?

To my mind Gatsby could have been so much more, a real person, had his vision not been clouded by one as worthless as Daisy.

TGG to me is the story of how pursuit of fantasy can ruin a man.

There’s no accounting for taste. The head doesn’t rule the heart – it just becomes a partner in crime. Can’t remember who said that.

To be serious for a moment though, I’ve often pondered the meaning of this from chapter 8:

“He must have looked up at an unfamiliar sky through frightening leaves and shivered as he found what a grotesque thing a rose is and how raw the sunlight was upon the scarcely created grass.”

Why is a rose grotesque? Is it because without a human concept of beauty anything is simply what it is? Gatsby is in some ways foolish for not seeing Daisy as the ‘bint’ she is but don’t we have to see into things more than is there? For me that’s a part of the ambiguity of the novel and of life. Gatsby’s dreams may only be dreams but they make the world a richer and more interesting place than the cold, brute materialism of Tom.

Xamonas Chegwe
01-06-2006, 10:08 AM
I don't disagree - but really, how can one feel any sympathy for a bloke who'd go to such great lengths for the sake of that shallow bint?


I agree - lets rip up all books involving men going to ridiculous lengths over unworthy women!

Where shall we start?

The Iliad - That Helen - bint and a half she was - Rip.
Romeo & Juliet - I mean come on! Killing yourself over a bint - Rip.
In fact, while we're at it, let's get rid of all of Shakespeare's comedies and most of the tragedies - Full of bints the lot of them - Rip.
1984 - Eduring room 101 all because of a quick shag with a bint that later betrays you - Rip.
Wuthering Heights - Getting all het up over a dead bint this time - Rip.
Pygmalion - what a waste of time trying to tart up that cockney bint - Rip.

And let's not be sexist here, there are plenty of bints going to ridiculous lengths over unworthy blokes. I'd get rid of Jane Austin for a start - all that dancing and marrying well - Rip.


Well let's have a look at what's left, shall we?

Erm, not a lot actually. A few textbooks and Beatrix Potter.

Perhaps we were a bit hasty. Maybe human relationships, especially of the man/woman variety, with all their incumbent frailties, misunderstandings and absurdities are at the heart of literature. Perhaps having characters in a book doing stupid things for love actually improves it's readability. And maybe, just maybe, that's because we can all relate to them better, having most of us done some pretty dumb things in the cause of love ourselves.


Can someone please pass the sellotape?

bootlegger
01-16-2006, 04:02 PM
I don't disagree - but really, how can one feel any sympathy for a bloke who'd go to such great lengths for the sake of that shallow bint?

To my mind Gatsby could have been so much more, a real person, had his vision not been clouded by one as worthless as Daisy.



i agree. who pines after such a materialistic annoying woman who openly flirts with her second cousin and forcibly stamps on any female attempt for emancipation by declaring that the best thing a woman can be is a silly little fool!

oh and in reference to the thread: by saying the Gatsby appeared to turn out alright in the end, Nick is a total hypocrit! Gatsby hasn't done any "turning", its Nick who has been sucked in by Gatsby's charisma, and has decided that hes a good guy after all.
Lets not forget that Gatsby almost ruined a marriage, and sparked a chain of events that lead to this own death. He is stuck in the immature 17-yr old persona he concieved to get wealthy, and has never really grown up or accepted that time passes, and people move on.
He is far from alright.
to take a less cyncial view, i guess by "alright in the end" Nick is referring to when he discovered that Gatsby's accumulation of wealth was not for himself, but for the woman he loved, somehow making it ok to be disgustingly extravangant.
whatever.

Diceman
02-07-2006, 12:10 AM
I agree - lets rip up all books involving men going to ridiculous lengths over unworthy women!

I've got a better idea - let's rip up posters who go to ridiculous lengths to labour a point. Especially those with a poor sense of analogy. I mean, Julia in 1984 a shallow bint? And Juliet too? Perhaps in the comic book edition, but not in the text I'm familiar with.

How absurd to tear up a book for a simple plot facet - when there are many many genuinely good reasons to tear up a book.

"The Great Gatsby" is (to me) a study in the collapse of a man. And it's a damn fine book because of this. I won't be tearing up my copy. Instead I'll slide it into the hole in my bookshelf which was created when I tore up Wuthering Heights. But that is another story.

My comment is not a criticism of the book, nor of the plot in general, but the fact that the novel could have been a story of self-discovery and enlightenment instead of the tale of a man ruined. How much more inspiring it would have been if Gatsby had risen above the level of those who surrounded him. Nevertheless one cannot have sympathy for the character: he was a better sort than all the others and he knew it. Despite this knowledge he drove himself to ruin through the pursuit of a lesser being, a false ideal, an unobtainable goal. His outcome was deserved because it was of his own choice and making. One can have no sympathy for the character. And in this, one can love the book.

Lesley
02-08-2006, 09:08 AM
To respond to Diceman's comment, 'if Gatsby had risen above the level of those around him'. Fitzgerald states that Gatsby's dream is 'incorruptible', yet in that one afternoon where Myrtle is killed, Gatsby obtains knowledge which undermines his dream, because it shows that he has had faith in a woman who is morally corrupt in herself. Gatsby does rise, but he rises in the eyes of the reader and in the perceptions of the narrator. Fitzgerald said 'show me a hero and I'll write you a tragedy', I think that the potency of Fitzgerald's legacy is that he wrote of the 'dying fall', the man subsumed by passions which are not 'put to good use', but passions nevertheless which are admirable for their intentions. It's the human dream that we see in Gatsby, the longing to capture the unobtainable butterfly of happiness.

That said, I had better get back to my dissertation on the good man and stop jabbering on here.

djmyerhmgirl
04-19-2006, 04:41 AM
Perhaps we were a bit hasty. Maybe human relationships, especially of the man/woman variety, with all their incumbent frailties, misunderstandings and absurdities are at the heart of literature. Perhaps having characters in a book doing stupid things for love actually improves it's readability. And maybe, just maybe, that's because we can all relate to them better, having most of us done some pretty dumb things in the cause of love ourselves.


Rofl!! I love you man!
I totally agree with what you're saying. Where's a love story without the stupid things people will do for love?
Honestly, any novel you pick up is a love story. It wouldn't sell if there was no passion. Of course it's not all for the love of a woman, sometimes it's for the love of a nation, hobby, flavour of pie... I dont' think we'd exist without love.

Andy3003
01-03-2007, 02:49 PM
Well to take a different line isn't it the fact that Gatsby was saved by death. He was dreamless on this world after his loss of his idealised conception of Daisy which rendered everything ephemeral and finite which diminished any 'capacity for wonder' which he had. Therefore death was the ultimate escape for him, where maybe he could find the 'platonic conception' of himself.