How is isolation shown in The Great Gatsby through Gatsby? 

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In Nick's first glimpse of Gatsby, before Nick even knows who he is, Gatsby is pictured standing alone "regarding the silver pepper of the stars," his hand reaching out toward to green light in the distance that we will learn represents his desire for Daisy:

... he stretched out his arms in a curious way, and  ... I could have sworn he was trembling.

Gatsby is aloof at this parties: he doesn't drink and he doesn't join the fun. 

He stood alone on the marble steps ... looking from one group to another ... .

But his isolation comes out more sharply after he ends his parties, and even more so as he waits in vain for Daisy to call the night that Myrtle is run over. Gatsby's giant home is dark, dusty and musty that evening, and Nick falls with "a splash on the keys of a ghostly piano."

After Gatsby is shot and dies, we feel the poignancy of his isolation; despite hundreds of people having come to his parties weekend after weekend, only Nick, Owl Eyes and Gatsby's father arrive for his funeral, along with some servants. Nick hears nothing from Daisy. She "hadn't sent a message or a flower," despite the fact that Gatsby did everything for love of her. As Owl Eyes says at the end of the funeral: "'The poor son of a bitch.'"

Gatsby seeks love and connection through an idealized relationship with Daisy that will erase the past five years and make him feel young and whole again. But in reality, the relationship is empty, and he is alone. 

 

 

 

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The Great Gatsby

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