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Describe Mr. Wilson and Myrtle. Do they seem to fit into the setting? (Chapter 2)

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southfan | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted February 27, 2012 at 5:03 PM via web

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Describe Mr. Wilson and Myrtle. Do they seem to fit into the setting? (Chapter 2)

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stolperia | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted February 28, 2012 at 1:55 AM (Answer #1)

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The Wilsons, especially George, very much fit the setting in which they live, the valley of ashes that is such a complete contrast with the world inhabited by Jay Gatsby and the others.

George is trapped in the valley due to circumstances beyond his control, but his surroundings have shaped his personality so that he is as colorless and hopeless as his business.

The interior was unprosperous and bare;...shadow of a garage...the proprietor himself appeared in the door of an office, wiping his hands on a piece of waste. He was a blond, spiritless man, anemic and faintly handsome.

George is a hen-pecked husband, willing to go and fetch chairs for the visitors when Myrtle orders him to do so. In Chapter 2, George doesn't yet realize that Myrtle is Tom Buchanan's mistress; he welcomes Tom's visits to the garage because they represent potential business income.

Myrtle dreams of having access to the money the Tom Buchanan represents. She assumes a different personality along with different attire when the group arrives at the New York City apartment she and Tom share.

Mrs. Wilson had changed her costume some time before, and was now attired in an elaborate afternoon dress of cream-colored chiffon, which gave out a continual rustle as she swept about the room. With the influence of the dress her personality had also undergone a change. The intense vitality that had been so remarkable in the garage was converted into impressive hauteur.

Myrtle is caught between the two worlds - the hopeless, helpless world of the ashes and George and the exciting, expensive dream world of Tom Buchanan and his forbidden fruits.

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