The Great Gatsby Questions and Answers
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Why do people arrive at Gatsby’s house uninvited in The Great Gatsby?

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People arrive at Jay Gatsby's house without an invitation because his parties are basically a come-one, come-all sort of affair. He does not really issue invitations; he just opens up his house every weekend and people are free to come—at least until he is reunited with Daisy, and then the parties stop because she does not like them.

Nick says that, on the night he first goes over to Gatsby's house, he was "one of the few guests who had actually been invited." Gatsby had sent his chauffeur over with an invitation earlier that day. People usually do not get invited to the parties, though; they simply show up. Nick describes the way they would jump into their cars and arrive on Long Island, sometimes introduced by someone who does actually know the host, and sometimes coming and going without having met or known Gatsby at all. He says that they come to Gatsby's house "with a simplicity of heart that was its own ticket of admission."

Once there, people act like they might at an "amusement park," Nick says, and they drink and dance and party and carouse until into the wee hours of the morning. In short, people arrive without invitation because they can, because this is the custom, and because Gatsby seems to be hoping that Daisy will saunter into one of his parties one day—as Jordan later explains.

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