Why do you think Daisy sobs when Gatsby shows her his shirts in chapter 5 of The Great Gatsby?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Daisy cries when Gatsby shows her his collection of tailor-made shirts because she knows it is vulgar to be showing her the shirts in the first place and bragging about how he has them specially made and imported. The shirts themselves are in bad taste because they are too colorful and ostentatious. Furthermore, Daisy cries because she understands that Gatsby doesn't even realize he is being vulgar. She understands that he is trying to impress her with his wardrobe and is doing just the opposite. She may have been infatuated with him once when he was a handsome young officer, but she cannot love the man he has become. She is crying for herself and for him and for the cruelty of life and the remorselessness of the passage of time. She probably feels that she does not deserve the worship that made Gatsby spend so much of his life trying to become worthy of her.

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial