Feminism in Gatsby
In his timeless novel The Great Gatsby, author Francis Scott Fitzgerald draws attention to the irrational nature of women and the effect it had on their lives during the 1920s. The female characters in the novel tend to irresponsibly think with their hearts rather than with their heads. Time and again, this way of the thinking leads these women to a life of unhappiness and insecurity. Fitzgerald utilizes tools such as paradox and imagery to effectively display the negative consequences of their choices. Fitzgerald’s purpose is to emphasize the true sufferings of women caused by their own lack of reason. He establishes a candid tone throughout the novel in order to demonstrate to readers that the true source of the emptiness and sorrow felt by women in the 1920’s does not come from the men in their lives, but from their own incoherence. Fitzgerald primarily uses paradox as a strategy that best exemplifies the irrational behavior and decisions women in the novel make. Early on in the novel, Jay Gatsby hosts grand parties at his home hoping to one day lure Daisy, the woman he is madly in love with, back into his life. Most women attend Gatsby’s parties not because they are friends with him, nor because they were invited, but instead to have a carefree time at a stranger’s expense. Jordan regularly attends these extravaganzas at Gatsby’s home; she confesses to Nick one night, “’I like large parties. They're so intimate. At small parties there isn't any privacy.’" Her statement
associates grandness with privacy and security, and smaller affairs with loneliness and discomfort. Jordan demonstrates the senseless thinking of many women of the era. They feel the need to be surrounded by strangers and indulge in the finest of things in order to feel intimate or secure. These gatherings are one way women fill the emptiness in their souls. They drink their pain away, dance off their fears, and gossip incessantly. These females are blinded...
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