The Great Gatsby Questions and Answers
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby book cover
Start Your Free Trial

Why Does Gatsby Love Daisy

In The Great Gatsby, why does Gatsby love Daisy? Is she the person he believes she is? Be specific and give examples. 

In The Great Gatsby, Gatsby loves Daisy because he's an idealist, one of life's genuine romantics. He's fallen in love, not so much with Daisy, but with an idealized version of her. Gatsby is drawn to Daisy primarily because of what she represents: a romance from years past as well as the old money elite by whom Gatsby wants to be accepted.

Expert Answers info

David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2017

write11,376 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Law and Politics

There’s an unreal quality about Gatsby’s love for Daisy. He doesn’t so much love her for herself as for what she represents. Primarily, she represents a much simpler, happier time, when Gatsby first met Daisy back in Kentucky all those years ago. Gatsby genuinely believes that he and Daisy shared something special, and wants to rekindle what he sees as a big romance.

Daisy also represents the rarefied world of the old money social elite, whose acceptance Jay desperately seeks. This is not to say that Gatsby doesn’t have feelings for Daisy; he most certainly does. It’s just that those feelings are mingled with his desire for social acceptance among the blue bloods of East Egg.

This complicates matters somewhat for Gatsby, making his pursuit of Daisy seem all the more hopeless and quixotic. In truth, Gatsby’s understanding of the romance that he and Daisy once had isn’t shared by Daisy herself. And as for Gatsby’s social ambitions, they have no hope whatsoever of being...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 935 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Jason Lulos eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2009

write3,306 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Social Sciences, and Science

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

Wiggin42 | Student

Gatsby "loves" Daisy because he is stuck in the past when their relationship worked out. "Can't change the past? Why, of course you can!" That quote basically summarizes why Gatsby thinks he loves Daisy. He is so obsessed with the past and the passion they shared that he cannot let it go.