吴若宇

Destined

吴若宇

At the beginning of the review, I am afraid but I need mention that I read The Great Gatzby from my paper book, not online, so it might be a little strange in the record of my reading history and also the lack of comments.

After reading the novel, I sympathized deeply for Gatzby, who dedicated almost his whole life into pursuing Daisy, but eventually was shot down for Daisy’s fault, and also Nick, who narrate this heart-broken story to us. But I believe that all is destined, not only his success, but also his miserable, dramatic ending.

First, Gatzby meant to be succeed, which was determined by his personality.  He was such an absolute perfectionist, fairly speaking, a paranoiac, that he never accept he was inferior to others in all kinds of aspects. He scheduled his life when he was young in order to achieve his goal. He couldn’t live like Tom who dissipated his time on women, also couldn’t like Wilson live so meaninglessly, and his ambition made it impossible for him to be content with common life. After the moment he denied his poor family background, changed his name into Jay Gatzby, he either succeed, or die.

No matter how, he will succeed. I always believe it because his characteristic promised.

And I also believe Gatzby would fall in love with a lady with a celebrated background. Because he was a perfectionist , he must long for a charming, wealthy, graceful aristocracy. Daisy was just a representation of perfection, a concrete thing in his dream.

However, Daisy falls far short of Gatzby’s ideal. She is beautiful and charming, but also fickle, shallow, and hypocritical. She is careless person who smashes thing up and then retreats behind her money. She allows Gatsby to take the blame for killing Myrtle ever though she herself was driving the car. Finally, rather than attend Gatsby’s funeral, Daisy and Tom move away, leaving no contact address.

Gatzby knew exactly what kind of person she was. And the very beginning of the novel, he said “Her voice is full of money”. But how can it matter? His puzzle of life would be incomplete without Daisy, and as we know, he was such a  paranoiac that never let it happen. It’s impossible for him to restart.

Gatzby’s obsession about Daisy and Daisy’s characteristic determined the trend of plot.

So, it is destined.

And not only from the plot development we can say Gatzby’s fate was destined, but also from the writer himself. Technically, Gatzby wasn’t a only fictional character, but also the reflection of writer, Fitzgerald himself. He also had a complex relationship of his own. His own experience made him believe that there’s a huge gap between the “natural” rich and the ”new” rich.

In rich boy, his another novel, he showed his attitude directly:

Let me tell you about the very rich. They are different from you and me. They possess and enjoy early, and it does something to them, makes them soft where we are hard, and cynical where we are trustful, in a way that, unless you were born rich, it is very difficult to understand.

They think, deep in their hearts, that they are better than we are because we had to discover the compensations and refuges of life for ourselves. Even when they enter deep into our world or sink below us, they still think that they are better than we are. They are different.

Because of the poverty and adversity they had been through, they always cherish the first glamorous thing dropping in their life. Some of them even take it as the highest goal in life, like Gatzby who considered Daisy as his whole world. When their dream faded out gradually, they might behave like Gatzby, deceive themselves to protect their “little green light” in their heart until their hearts are beaten to pieces by reality.

At last, I want to use the final sentence in The Great Gaztby as the end, which I consider as the most profound ending I have ever read and inspire me a lot. Gatzby’s dream was always behind him, from the moment he met Daisy and fell in love with her. So what he did was just striving hard back into the past against the current of time, like the ending says:

So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.

2015-04-22
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