How Does F. Scott Fitzgerald Portray Daisy and Tom in the First Chapter?

Topics: F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Ku Klux Klan Pages: 4 (1426 words) Published: December 7, 2010
The Buchanans have been stereotypically introduced by Fitzgerald as the typical representation of the “Lost Generation” (Gertrude Stein). Tom and Daisy Buchanan inhabit qualities of America during the era after WW1 – people were intolerant, materialistic and lacked spiritualism. They live in the East Egg and are the representations of the love for a Romantic lifestyle and the desperation to seek new ideas (generally from Europe) and accept them. The Buchanans have spent a year in France in pursuit of pleasure, not (like Nick) on war service and Fitzgerald describes them as wealthy drifters who “drifted here and there unrestfully”. They are part of a community who were “rich together” and this implies a questionable significance of their lives, whether existing was the only objective. Further on in the novel, it can be seen that Tom and Daisy’s aimless way of life establishes a contrast with the disciplined schedule drawn up by young James Gatz, which is displayed, following Gatsby’s death, proudly by his father. The Buchanans live in a “Georgian Colonial mansion” which instantly places them amongst the elite and patrician. The irony of the description, “cheerful” is that despite the attempt of trying to create a perfect life and trying to ensure everyone is notified of how rich they were, Fitzgerald shows throughout the novel that the reality of the Buchanans’ were nowhere near as “cheerful” as it initially seems. The colours used to describe Buchanan’s place are rich, “gold” having the double implication of wealth and sunshine. The décor of the house harks to the European influences showing the eagerness to flaunt their “french windows”, again in attempt to emphasise how the American upper class had their privileges based on their wealth. However, Tom seems to be uncomfortable in his own surroundings, at one point his eyes begin “flashing about restlessly” – he is desperate to be perfect, desperate to be stronger and more of a man” than Nick is. Tom Buchanan is...
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