What does Wilson reveal to Tom about Myrtle's desire at the garage in chapter 7?

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teachersage eNotes educator| Certified Educator

At Jordan's request, Tom stops for gas at Wilson's station. Tom is upset, having just discovered his wife's affair, and Wilson is also upset, having also discovered his own wife is having an affair, though he doesn't know with whom. Wilson tells Tom that he and Myrtle want to go west. Tom is surprised and questions that Myrtle would want this. Wilson insists she's wanted to go for ten years and says that now he's taking her, whether she likes it or not.

Of course, it's not clear that this is, in fact, what Myrtle wants, as we never hear from Myrtle on the subject. It is what George Wilson says that Myrtle wants. He seems to contradict himself when, after saying it is what she wants, he says he is going to take her whether she wants it or not. What is clear is that Wilson wants to get Myrtle away from whoever it is she is having an affair with.

Jamie Wheeler eNotes educator| Certified Educator

"My wife and I want to go west," George tells Tom as they stop for the gas. "She's been talking about it for ten years," he continues, "And she's going whether she wants to or not. I'm going to get her away."

George does not realize his wife's indiscretions have been with Tom, but he intuits enough to know *something* is going on. In desperation, George decides that her "want" is to actually make this much-talked about move, away from her "life apart from him."

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The Great Gatsby

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