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Symbols of The Great Gatsby

            The Great Gatsby is a book about class, wealth, and social standing. Nick Carroway is an educated young man from Minnesota. After going to school at Yale and joining the army to fight in WWI, Nick moves out to the east coast to learn the bond business. Nick moves to West Egg, a part of Long Island mostly inhabited by the newly rich. Nick's next-door neighbor is one Jay Gatsby. Gatsby is extremely wealthy and is famous for the extravagant parties he throws. Gatsby is obsessed with a woman who lives across the lake, in East Egg; the woman is an old love of Gatsby's and also Nick's cousin. The woman's name is Daisy Buchanan and has no idea that Gatsby lives across the lake. Daisy is married to Tom Buchanan, a man of great wealth and social standing. Tom is very arrogant and hypocritical. When Tom discovers that Daisy and Gatsby may be having an affair, he wants to kill Gatsby. This is very hypocritical because at the same time Tom is having an affair with a woman, Myrtle, from the valley of ashes, an industrial wasteland situated between West Egg and New York. There are many symbols that F. Scott Fitzgerald uses in "The Great Gatsby". The green light at the end of Daisy's dock, the giant eyes of T.J. Eckleberg, Owl Eyes, the drunk at Gatsby's parties, East and West Egg and the valley of ashes are all examples of some of these symbols. .
             The green light at the end of Daisy's dock symbolized Gatsby's longing for Daisy, who although is right across the lake, he cannot simply go over there and declare his love for her. Nick first sees Gatsby reaching out to the water, out to Daisy, and then he vanished (26). The green symbolizes money, success and acceptance. "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter - tomorrow we will run faster, stretch our arms out farther ." (189). This shows that Gatsby will always be in pursuit of his dreams and won't let anything get in his way of accomplishing them.

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