How do Myrtle and Tom use each other in terms of money? What is the reason behind this fake relationship?

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the materialistic world in which they dwell, Tom Buchanan purchases Daisy with a $350,000 pearl necklace, and Daisy purchases Tom with her standing as an upper class socialite. 

Daisy and Tom Buchanan are selfish people. Nick Carraway, the narrator, describes them in this way:

They were careless people...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....

The Buchanans represent those of the Jazz Age who have eroded moral values before the increasing materialism and cynicism. Among their ilk, the American Dream has become tarnished. With her voice that Jay Gatsby describes as "full of money," Daisy is frivolous and foolish. And, while Gatsby pursues hers with sincerity and optimism that the past can, indeed, be recaptured, Daisy merely toys with his emotions, telling Gatsby when he wants her to leave her husband, "Oh, you want too much!"

Similarly, Tom is insincere. He takes Myrtle Wilson to New York City and the like, but he just as easily discards her when if will affect his class standing. He and Daisy are both expedient people.

Read the study guide:
The Great Gatsby

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