The Great Gatsby

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About the author

F. Scott Fitzgerald was born on the 24th of September 1896 and died on the 21st of December 1940. He was a famous American writer of novels and short stories and The Great Gatsby is one of his greatest works, although it wasn't seen as a great work until his death. He was living a very exclusive lifestyle and therefore was in financial trouble permanently. When he moved to Hollywood in 1937 he had an annual income of less than 30.000$ and made most of this with selling short stories. His extravagant lifestyle had inormous effects on his health and he has been an alcoholic since his college days. He had two heart attacks in the 1930s and died because of a third on in 1940 at the age of 44. His works became more and more popular from this day on and The Great Gatsby is nowadays seen as one of the greatest pieces of American literature.

Lea am 27.1.14 21:20, kommentieren

Daisy's song

I was listening to Coldplay's "Paradise" the other day and somehow this song reminded me of the character of Daisy. She seems to be trapped in the life she always dreamed of but with the wrong man on her side. She has everything she ever dreamed of but it seems like she has been waiting for Gatsby all her life. When his name is first mentioned she is really surprised and full of hope immediately. The song says "When she was just a girl, she expected the world" which is exactly the reason why Gatsby walked away from her back then - because he knew he is not enough for her. That's why he decided to become wealthy and a great man that can give her everything she wants and needs.

"The wheel breaks the butterfly.
Every tear, a waterfall.
In the night, the stormy night,
She closed her eyes.
In the night, the stormy night,
Away she flied."

This passage of the song reflects Daisy's life and the way she feels very well. She was a beautiful happy butterfly once but she is broken because of her husband now. Altough she knows what is going on she somehow shuts her eyes and pretends not to know. She tries to keep the perfection of her life and simply creates another world in her mind, a world where nothing of what makes her sad is happening. A world to escape.

Coldplay - Paradise

 

Lea am 24.1.14 12:56, kommentieren

The movie doesn't get it all...

People say that reading a book and then watching the movie they made out of it is always a disappointment because you always expect to much... With The Great Gatsby I did it the other way around - I saw the movie some time ago and just read the book. But guess what - the effect has been the same! Right after the first few chapters of the book I noticed that the film is very superficial and does not express the deep thoughts and feelings of Nick Carraway at all. In the movie he seems to be observing the world and does not really seem to be a part of it. Furthermore what I found really surprising when reading the book was that he actually had feeling for Jordan Baker. In the movie the two seem to be friends and it is never mentioned that Nick thinks about her the way he does in the book.

I found a really interesting blog about all the differences between the 2013 movie and the book so if you are interested, check this out:

 

http://creativeeccentric.wordpress.com/2013/05/26/books-into-movies-the-great-gatsby2013-and-1974-based-on-the-novel-the-great-gatsby/ 

Lea am 26.1.14 12:20, kommentieren

The Character of Myrtle Wilson

                                               

Source:

http://images1.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130126195522/thegreatgatsby/images/f/f7/Myrtle.png

 

The novel implies several different characters, which all play an important role. I will now focus on one important character - the one of Myrtle Wilson.

Myrtle is described as "[...] in the middle thirties, and faintly stout [..]" (p.26, l. 11f). She has slight overweight, but carries "her surplus flesh sensuously as some woman can." (p.26, l.13f) She is George Wilson's wife, who owns the nearby garage and buys and sells cars for a living. It is obvious that love does not dominate their marriage. Myrtle and George Wilson live a life in the lower class, not being able to live a lavish life. In order to gain more money and reputation, Myrtle becomes Tom Buchanan's mistress. She knows that Tom is part of the upper class and she intends to receive more wealth and a higher position in society, if she becomes his lover. Tom is able to afford whatever Myrtle wishes for. 

Unfortunately exactly the aspects of a failed marriage, a distressed couple, an unofficial lover and the coincidental trip to New York City lead to Myrtle's demise. 

In my opinion Myrtle's character was chosen very precisely, because she depicts the woman, who aims at living the American dream. Myrtle is obsessed with wealth, financial independence and a good reputation. She seems ruthless and would probably do anything to gain glamour and an expensive lifestyle.  

 

Rachel am 25.1.14 20:54, kommentieren