Relationships In The Great Gatsby Essay Research

Relationships In The Great Gatsby Essay, Research Paper

Kyle Kincaid

March 3, 1999


The Relationships of The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby is a tragic story of the American dream. This dream differs

among the characters in the story. For Jay it is money, power, and Daisy. For Nick it is

success, and happiness. For Daisy it is fun, love, and other people’s money. The

characters use their relationships with each other to reach their dream. Jay uses Jordan

and Nick to have Daisy. Jay uses Wolfshiem to get money and power. Their

relationships also take a great toll on their lives. Tom’s affair and Daisy’s affair cause the

death of Jay and George, and Nick regrets ever moving to West egg.

The relationship I chose from The Great Gatsby is the one between Jay

Gatsby and Daisy Buchannan. The relationship started before the story; “We’ve met

before,” (chapter V, p91). According to Gatsby, “Five years next November,” (chapter

V, p92). Gatsby couldn’t marry Daisy and left her to amass his own fortune. He would

later move across the bay from Daisy, “Gatsby bought that house so that Daisy would be

just across the bay,” (chapter IV, p83). He threw extravagant parties hoping Daisy would

attend one. He himself does not participate but watches from a distance. When Daisy

never shows up, he asks around if anyone knows her and so meets Nick Caraway,

Daisy’s cousin. Throughout the story, Jay is convinced Daisy still loves him. Jay cannot

accept that the past is gone and done with. While rushing from Gatsby’s mansion, Daisy

accidentally hits Myrtle Wilson in Gatsby’s car (chapter VII, p144-145). Infuriated,

George Wilson, Myrtle’s husband, kills Gatsby (chapter VIII, p169) thinking it was

Gatsby in the car then commits suicide (chapter VIII, p170).

The next relationship I will write about is between Jordan Baker and Nick

Carraway. This relationship attempts to be constructive but is disastrous to everyone

except Jordan and Nick themselves. Jordan acts as a “matchmaker.” She connects Nick

and Jay and Daisy and Jay. Therefore, she indirectly was a cause of Jay’s death and

influenced Nick’s feelings at the end of the story. Nick regarded Jordan as a friend and

Jordan may have had a crush on him. She is a careless person, letting life speed past her

as seen in this conversation between Jordan and Nick.

“You’re a rotten driver, either you ought to be more careful or you oughtn’t to drive at all.”

“I am careful.”

“No you’re not.”

“Well, other people are.”

“What’s that got to do with it?”

“They’ll keep out of my way, It takes two to make an accident.”

“Suppose you met somebody just as careless as yourself?”

“I hope I never will, I hate careless people. That’s why I like you.”

(chapter III, p63)

It is humorous that Jordan states that she is careful, when she actually isn’t. Also

this conversation hints at Jordan’s feelings for Nick.

People’s dreams can cause them to act inappropriately. Misunderstandings can

kill and we are tempted to ask whether friendships and relationships are worth their

negative consequences. If Nick never met Gatsby its possible the story would be

different, Gatsby would probably have lived and things would have been better. If any of

the characters had different relationships such tragedy would have not happened. This

happens often in real life and the moral I interpreted is choose your friends wisely.


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