The Great Gatsby Questions and Answers
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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What quotes are there to describe the "hollowness of the upper class" in "The Great Gatsby"?

There are several quotes that describe the hollowness of the upper class in The Great Gatsby. Fitzgerald depicts Daisy's hollow personality when she tells Nick,

"You see I think everything’s terrible anyhow...I’ve been everywhere and seen everything and done everything..."

Nick also describes Tom and Daisy as hollow individuals by saying,

"They were careless people, Tom and Daisy—they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money…"

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Throughout The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald illustrates the hollowness of the upper class by depicting the shallow, superficial personalities of elite members of society. In chapter one, Nick visits the Buchanan estate and has an enlightening conversation with Daisy. Daisy hails from an affluent family and has been given numerous privileges and opportunities because of her wealth. Daisy declares that she has become quite cynical and tells Nick,

"You see I think everything’s terrible anyhow...Everybody thinks so—the most advanced people. And I KNOW. I’ve been everywhere and seen everything and done everything...Sophisticated—God, I’m sophisticated!" (Fitzgerald, 20).

Daisy's comments are rather hollow because the reader recognizes that her wealth and status has protected her from many difficult experiences. Daisy has never had to live paycheck to paycheck, worry about her next meal, or even work for a living.

Fitzgerald continues to highlight the superficial, materialistic nature of the...

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