1. Describe three key characters and explain how they change throughout the novel

  • Jay Gatsby- 

What is your impression of him at the beginning of the novel?  We are first introduced to Gatsby as the guy who throws the spectacular, extravagant parties every weekend which attract everyone from all over. He appears as someone who is surrounded by luxury, fame   and has connections to powerful men and beautiful women. He is shrouded in secrets and is the subject of the whirlwind of gossip and rumours that we hear about his past. All throughout New York he is considered some sort of celebrity as everyone talked about him but no-one actually seemed to know him personally.

What evidence can you give to support your impression?  

“Somebody told me they thought he killed a man once.” A thrill passed over all of us. The three Mr.

Mumbles bent forward and listened eagerly.

“I don’t think it’s so much that,” argued Lucille sceptically; “it’s more that he was a German spy during the war.” One of the men nodded in confirmation.

“I heard that from a man who knew all about him, grew up with him in Germany,” he assured us positively.

“Oh, no,” said the first girl, “it couldn’t be that, because he was in the American army during the war.”- This shows all the rumours that circulate about Gatsby where no-one really knows the truth.

What is your impression of him at the end of the novel?  By the end of the novel Gatsby’s secrets have slowly leaked out and we discover that he comes from a very poor family and made his money through illegal actions. We then find out that all the things that he has done were all for the love of his life, Daisy. He ends up coming across as a young, naive man who is deep in love and only has one sole goal in life.

What evidence can you give to support your impression? 

“It was a strange coincidence,” I said.

“But it wasn’t a coincidence at all.”

“Why not?”

“Gatsby bought that house so that Daisy would be just across the bay.”- This shows that Gatsby really would do anything for Daisy and that the whole reason he bought a house in West egg was to be directly across the bay from Daisy.

  • Daisy Buchanan

What is your impression of her at the beginning of the novel?  At the start of the novel Daisy came across as friendly and bubbly, someone with a lot of poise and grace. She was quite naive and reserved as she came from a wealthy family and married into money. Her colour is white which typically signifies innocence and purity. We are first introduced to her when Nick goes to the Buchanans house and she seems as though she loves Nick very much and sounded very excited to see him.

What evidence can you give to support your impression? 

“I’m p−paralyzed with happiness.” She laughed again, as if she said something very witty, and held my hand for a moment, looking up into my face, promising that there was no one in the world she so much wanted to see. – She seemed very energetic and excited all of the time and very happy to see Nick

What is your impression of her at the end of the novel? By the end of the novel, Daisy’s true character is revealed to us and we realise she is not the innocent character we thought she was but in fact she is shallow minded, insensitive, and bored. Daisy is only in love with money and her life revolves around her wealth and status. She has a daughter but considers her as more of a doll than a child and we only hear her mentioned about once in the book. She allows Gatsby to the the blame for Myrtles death and when Gatsby dies she doesn’t even have the audacity to attend the funeral even though she claims to have loved him but instead she fled from her issues and problems.

What evidence can you give to support your impression?  They were careless people, Tom and Daisy they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made . . .- This shows that Daisy has no real cares for others and only thinks about her wellbeing and lifestyle.

  • Nick Carraway

What is your impression of him at the beginning of the novel?  When we are first introduced to Nick he states that he is someone who does not judge others of who they are or what they have done and reserves all judgement. He seems to have had practise at it in college and seems as though he is very true to his morals and takes a lot of thought into what his Dad had told him as reserving judgement was something he said to live by.

What evidence can you give to support your impression?  “I’m inclined to reserve all judgments, a habit that has opened up many curious natures to me, and also made me the victim of not a few veteran bores”. – at the start of the novel Nick said this and made out that it was very important to him.

What is your impression of him at the end of the novel?  by the end of the novel it is clear to see that from the first impression of Nick, what I now think of him is vey different. As Nick is slowly introduced to the characters in the book, he can’t help but judge something about them or their lives. We soon discover that he does make first impression judgements about people and does indeed notice the flaws often an express them.

What evidence can you give to support your impression?   And with this doubt, his whole statement fell to pieces, and I wondered if there wasn’t something a little sinister about him, after all.

“What part of the Middle West?” I inquired casually. “San Francisco.”
“I see.”- This shows Nick’s doubt in Gatsby’s story and he can’t help but consider if Gatsby really is somewhat sinister.

2. Identify how each of the characters you have explored above presented the idea of illusion in the text. Describe how they concealed their true self from other characters in the novel. Explain what helped you uncover their illusion in the text. 

Gatsby conveys the idea of illusion by telling everyone he comes across, a story that he wants everyone to believe. To some it is believable because it is almost believable to him as it is what his dream lifestyle consists of but others find something shady about him. As the novel progressed, parts of his upbringing and life is slowly revealed and his true personality is revealed and it is clear to see that his whole life has been achieving his one goal- Daisy.

Daisy hides her true personality from pretty much everyone she encounters but mainly Nick and Gatsby. She seems innocent and pure but in reality she is the total opposite and only cares about her status and wealth. By acting innocent and pure she gave off an auto of wealth, charm and sophistication to Gatsby which lured him in and kept him falling for her. Her true personality is slowly revealed as the novel progresses and she is faced with the decision between Gatsby and Tom.

The narrator nick say he is a non judgemental person and that he reserves his judgement but as we are introduced to various characters we realise that he does have an opinion on them and can’t help but judge them in some way.

3. Describe three important relationships in the text. Explain how these relationships were presented as being “false”.

Daisy and Gatsby- This relationship was false because Gatsby had this dream for so long of him and Daisy being together and starting their life off again when in reality this was not possible as the five years that had passed had separated them. Even though Gatsby could not see this the time was restricting them from being together and as every day went by the reality of them ever being together stretched further and further from Gatsby’s reach.

Daisy and Nick- Daisy states her great love for Nick at the start of the novel but as it progresses it is clear to see that he is just another person who is part of her money filled world that she revolves around. Their relationship is fake and she acts as if Nick is someone she can boss around who will always be there for her whenever she calls, but in reality he is his own person and is nothing like Daisy, just merely dragged into her problems and issues.

Daisy and tom- There relationship is false because Daisy originally just married Tom for his wealth and status. Even though she did love him she also loved Gatsby and Tom was having an affair with Myrtle which Daisy was aware of. They had a child together but this child meant nothing to them and when Gatsby and Daisy were becoming close again she had many intimate moments and secret meetings with Gatsby behind Toms back, so was also having an affair for a period of time.



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