Expert Answers

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

Your reasons for doing things are personal. The only person who can know your reasons is you. While an educator can suggest possible ways in which students might benefit from reading a book, those are not necessarily your reasons. A few possibilities are:

  1. The Great Gatsby is required reading for one of your classes. Although you can try to save time be reading summaries instead, by doing so you will miss important details, causing you to get lower grades on papers and tests. 
  2. By reading extended (several hundred page) works written for adults, you develop high-order reading skills. Although your future employers won't quiz you on the contents of Fitzgerald's novel, in most professional jobs you will be required to read and understand long, complex documents. Thus the reading skills you develop by doing the full reading are transferable to both other classes and the work environment. The more you read, the faster your reading speed and the greater your reading comprehension.
  3. The more you read, the better you write. Many studies on student writing skills show that high quantities of reading are strongly correlated with writing skill.
  4. To understand the present involves knowing how things arrived at their present state. The Great Gatsby is a story with many details about life in the Jazz Age before the Great Depression and can help you understand the evolution of American society.
  5. The Great Gatsby is part of the American literary canon. This means that most well-educated Americans have read it, and not knowing it may, in certain social circles, make you appear ignorant and uneducated.
  6. You might enjoy it.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial