Jack Gatz, better known as Jay Gatsby, is an idealistic dreamer who lives in the past, wishing for a relationship with the lovely Daisy Buchanan. He romanticizes the present, and cannot let go of events that occurred years ago. Though the world Gatsby is in moves rapidly around him, he is forever stuck in the haze of yesterday. He is a Romantic idealist living in the wrong time, and is therefore set up to fail due to forces he does not comprehend.
Gatsby is a true romanticist; he looks at the past through rose-colored glasses, and forever yearns for what has been. He retains the Romantic qualities of integrity, loyalty, and idealism throughout his presence in the harsh and seething world of the nouveau riche New Yorkers. His integrity is present in many situations, particularly when he takes the blame for Myrtle’s hit-and-run murder. “Of course [he] say[s] [he] was” driving, because he loves and cares for Daisy. After the incident, his integrity and loyalty to his love show again, when Gatsby decides to “wait and see if [Tom] tries to bother her about [the] unpleasantness.” Jay Gatsby is truly devoted to Daisy Buchanan, and even after she spurns him, he is unable to stop protecting her. In addition to being unfailingly loyal, he is extremely idealistic. Even after many years of marriage to Tom, Daisy is still Gatsby’s true love. He does not doubt the hope that Daisy will one day love him. Also, after the
accident, he still expects Daisy to call him, though their relationship is formally over. His idealism, loyalty, and integrity all characterize him as the stereotypically naive Romantic hero, faced by daunting odds.
Gatsby’s exceedingly romantic view on life is a sharp contrast to the Buchanan’s casual apathy to the world. They have no expectations, obligations, or standards. Shamelessly materialistic and wealthy, they are the epitome of a couple that comes from old money. An example of this is...