How does Fitzgerald create a satire that comments on American Ideals through characters besides Gatsby?Characters like Tom Buchanan, Daisy, Jordan Baker, the people at his parties.... Please refer...

How does Fitzgerald create a satire that comments on American Ideals through characters besides Gatsby?

Characters like Tom Buchanan, Daisy, Jordan Baker, the people at his parties....

Please refer to specific examples/quotes in the book....

 

Asked on by syk94

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

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Fitzgerald cleverly creates satirical archetypes through characterization. Characterization is the process of giving characters traits. This happens through what characters say about themselves, how they look, how the act, and what others say about them.

Take a look at Tom. In the beginning, Tom is described as hulking, he wears his fancy riding gear and boots, and we learn that Tom is wealthy beyond his own imagination. We also find that he is dissatisfied with his marriage at least in one department because he has a mistress. We also learn that Tom is trying to read. This character in Tom is a typical American. He has so much that he doesn't know what to do with it all. He is so blessed, he does not have to work. This is also a typical East Coast Old Money type of person. Fitzgerald in making this picture of a charcter demonstrates that money isn't the answer. Through mocking Tom, we laugh and receive the message.

Daisy is the archetypical flapper of the day. Women in the 20s were beginning to have rights. They were flamboyant, fast little "fools". Daisy confesses this about herself and even relishes in the identitiy as she introduces her daughter that way. She is unfufilled in this identity too. Because we see Fitzgerald hyperbolize her flawed character we understand that women tried very hard to have a new identity, but it did not fulfill them either.

Jordan, a lazy and careless mooch, typifies the 20s as an era. I always wonder what it would have been like to live so high and mighty without having to work. Although Jordan works, I think the abandonment of family is demonstrated in her character. Without close relationships one can grow cold. Jordan makes cutting remarks throughout the book that make Nick wonder at the state of their relationship. Jordan's character mocks that person who would struggle on in life without closeness. We find her unfulfilled too.

These are a series of ideas on each character. This question has many parts to it, maybe another editor will give you a more specific case study on one of these.

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