According to George Wilson, what do the large, piercing eyes of Dr. Eckleburg represent?As  mentioned in the earlier chapters of The Great Gatsby, there is a huge poster of Dr. Eckleburg which...

According to George Wilson, what do the large, piercing eyes of Dr. Eckleburg represent?

As  mentioned in the earlier chapters of The Great Gatsby, there is a huge poster of Dr. Eckleburg which over looks the Valley of Ashes.

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mwestwood | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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In Chapter Eight of The Great Gatsby, after the accident in which his wife is killed by Gatsby's car, Wilson and his Greek friend Michaelis stay up all night talking.  Wilson reveals to his friend that he has found a dog leash and confronted Myrtle about having a lover, telling her that she could not hide her sins from the eyes of God.  When the eyes of Dr. Eckleburg are illuminated by the rising sun, Wilson believes them to be the eyes of God.  For, he asserts that Eckleburg's eyes see all that happens:  "God sees everything."  Then, Wilson concludes that God exacts revenge for the killing of Myrtle and he leaves in search of the owner of the yellow car, the "death car."

It is symbolic of the moral corruption of the Jazz Age that Dr. Eckleburg, as God, looks down upon a wastleland, a world devoid of any worth, meaning, or beauty.  And, although Gatsby's world appears prettier than Wilson's, his case is "the service of a vast, vulgar, and meretricious beauty" that is a gross parallel of the Valley of Ashes.

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