The Great Gatsby Questions and Answers
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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What significance has the billboard of Dr. T.J. Eckleburg taken on for George Wilson?

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After George Wilson's wife, Myrtle, is hit by Daisy while she is driving Gatsby's car on their way home from New York, Wilson believes that the man who owns that car was the man with whom Myrtle was having an affair.  He believes that this man meant to murder her.  Speaking to his neighbor, Michaelis, he explains a conversation he'd had with Myrtle about her affair prior to her death.  He'd told her that she might be able to fool him but that "'she couldn't fool God.'"  He had walked her to their window and told her that God knew everything that she'd been doing.  Michaelis realizes that Wilson is talking about the disembodied eyes on the Dr. T.J. Eckleburg billboard and that Wilson thinks those are God's eyes.  

It is pretty sad that this poor man believes a sign is God because it means that his concept of God is someone who sits and watches and doesn't seem to really care when we need him.  Typically, those who believe in a God think of him as someone who loves and listens to us, not someone who sits back and does nothing while we suffer.  Further, the fact that he associates God with an advertisement designed to make money symbolizes the link between money and power.  If one has enough money, like Tom or Daisy, one can be almost as powerful as a god; one who lacks money, like Wilson, is practically powerless.

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