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Color Symbols and Symbolism in The Great Gatsby

Color Symbolism in The Great Gatsby

Color symbolism is popular in novels written during the 1920’s. One such example is Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby. There is much color symbolism in this novel, but there are two main colors that stand out more than the others. The colors green and white influence the story greatly. Green shows many thoughts, ideas, attitudes, and choices that Gatsby has throughout the story. White represents the stereotypical façade that every character is hiding behind.

The color green, as it is used in the novel, symbolizes different choices the character, Gatsby, can make during his life. The green element in this novel is taken from the green light at the end of the dock near Daisy’s house. The color itself represents serenity, as in everything is perfect. This warns Gatsby that he should not pursue his dream for getting Daisy back, because his chance has passed and everything is as it should be. This is shown with Nick’s insight, “…His dream must have seemed so close that he could hardly fail to grasp it. He did not know that it was already behind him…(Pg.189)”

Another symbolization of the color green, which contradicts the first, is the meaning “go.” As in a traffic light signal, most people associate green with the word and action “go.” This can be interpreted as meaning Gatsby should go for his dream without hesitation. It implies that Gatsby and Daisy are meant to be together and nothing should stop Gatsby from his destined happiness and love with Daisy. It inspires hope for Gatsby that he is on the right path, heading towards the best years of his life. He believes that things will soon be as they once were, only better. “I’m going to fix everything just the way they were before,” he said nodding determinedly. “She’ll see.(Pg. 117)”

The last symbolization the color green has in this novel is an urge to strive ahead in life, to do better in life and succeed. Gatsby changes his entire persona for a better, more sociable, image and status. He is constantly striving to be a more successful figure in society. Ever since he was a boy he put himself on a schedule with hopes for becoming a highly respected, well-known person. “He knew he had a big future in front of him.

The Great Gatsby: The Sympathetic Readers

The Great Gatsby: The Sympathetic Readers

You can easily become very sympathetic to a character by how the author

portrays him or her in a story. In The Great Gatsby the main character is an

ostentatious bootlegger who pines for one thing, a married woman. Somehow,

the author swindles the reader into being sympathetic for Gatsby throughout

the entire novel. Fitzgerald makes the reader compassionate by showing how

Gatsby had extravagant parties for anyone who wanted to come, how he

struggled to get ahead in life, and how he endeavored for Daisy’s love.

Gatsby had an exuberant and lavish party almost every night. His house

was full of people, some of whom he had never met before. “I believe that on

the first night I went to Gatsby’s house I was one of the few guests who had

actually been invited. People were not invited – they went there.” (45) Some

may think Gatsby was just trying to swagger. However, if this was the

circumstance he would have just invited the people he wanted to show off to.

To hold these prodigal parties Gatsby may have obtained money from

racketeering but he still used it appropriately. He had dignified caterers,

brilliant and luminous lights, scrumptious and exquisite food, and a grand

orchestra at all of his parties. Gatsby let people have a great time at his

expense. “I like to come,” one guest said. “I never care what I do, so I

always have a good time. When I was here last a I tore my gown on a chair,

and he (Gatsby) asked me my name and address-inside of a week I got a package

from Croirier’s with a new evening gown in it.” This incident was not even

Gatsby’s fault, but he was kind enough to pay for a brand new, exorbitant

dress. Despite Gatsby’s ex…

… middle of paper …

…sby fabricated that he had been the

one driving the car. He waited outside Daisy’s house just to make sure Tom

didn’t aggrieve Daisy.

The dictionary defines “great” as an adjective that means remarkable in

magnitude, degree, or effectiveness, full of emotion, eminent, distinguished,

grand, markedly superior in character or quality, noble, remarkably skilled,

marked by enthusiasm, used as a generalized term of approval. All of these

terms together though can not adequately describe Gatsby. Nick declares,

“They’re a rotten crowd. You’re worth the whole damn bunch put together.”

Nick vocally expresses his admiration for The Great Gatsby. The reader is

compelled to agree, conjuring up all of the sentiments of the very

definitions of “great”. Despite some of the methods and antics utilized by

Gatsby, in the end we all became sympathetic readers.

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