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What are the character traits for all the characters in The Great Gatsby during...

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nicholasjason | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted September 30, 2012 at 3:09 PM via web

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What are the character traits for all the characters in The Great Gatsby during chapter 7?

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missy575 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted September 30, 2012 at 4:06 PM (Answer #1)

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The seven main characters of the book undergo their weakest features of character in chapter 7. 

Wilsonlocks Myrtle up because he learns that she has cheated on him. This leads to her escape effort, and eventual death. Therefore readers see Wilson possessive and controlling, then later distraught, disoriented, and broken: 

Picking Wilson up like a doll, Tom carried him into the office.

Tom learns of both the affair Daisy was having with Gatsby and his mistresses' death. This rips him apart, and he works to control the situations, but still breaks. Tom is controlling, authoritative, selfish, angry, abusive, reactive, broken, and dishonest:


Self-consciously, with his [Tom's] authoritative arms breaking the way, we pushed through the crowd... In a little while I heard a low husky sob, and saw that tears were overflowing down his face.

Myrtle feels stifled, trapped, insecure, and robbedby the hand life has dealt her. She tries to escape the life she has with George Wilson only to find sudden death.

Daisydemostrates vacillating courageover the course of the chapter outrightly living her affair with Gatsby, but buckling under his effort to stifle her marriage to Tom. Her character waversand when she speaks about love to each of the her voice is described as "pitiful" and "cold", and is used "with visible effort". Daisy doesn't know what she wants. Daisy's character is fearful, apprehensive, selfish, complex, unapologetic, and depressed.

Gatsbycan be described as absolutely obsessedwith Daisy's happiness. After she essentially commits a murder Nick describes Gatsby like this:

He spoke as if Daisy's reaction was the only thing that mattered.

Gatsby can be described as singularly-focused, selfish, relentless, determined, and adamant.

Jordan Baker maintains her purpose as a character that decorates the scene with the attitude of the 20s. She is weighted by the need to look right and be served. She doesn't want to get too hot. When she offers a comment, she smiles with arrogance. 

Nick faithfully reports the situation, and in sympathy with the reader, he is somewhat disgusted by what he sees.

 

 

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