Sweltering Summer Heat in “the Great Gatsby”

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Heat can be described as the increase in temperature until it becomes intolerable or unbearable. In literature, many authors use heat as a symbolic device to represent elements such as love, confusion and anger. In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald also uses the sweltering heat to enhance the mood and setting of the novel. The novel starts in spring but the climax occurs during the hottest days of the summer. In this essay, I will attempt to show that Fitzgerald effectively uses heat to show the passion between Daisy and Gatsby, the increasing tension between Gatsby and Tom and the difference between the wealthy and the poor classes.

The sweltering heat represents the love and passion between Gatsby and Daisy. In chapter five, Nick secretly arranges Gatsby to meet with Daisy. However, their reunion begins among a pouring rain and it proved to be awkward and melancholy. Their love reawakens just as the sun begins to come out. After they realize they still love each other, they continue to meet secretly usually under the cover of Gatsby’s many parties. In chapter six, Daisy and Gatsby leave Tom at the party so that they can be alone together. The readers can see that their passion for each other has reached a boiling point and they finally decide to reveal their relationship to Tom. They decided to reveal their relationship over lunch at Daisy’s house. Fitzgerald attempts to show the passion and tension among Tom, Gatsby and Daisy by stating that the day was broiling and definitely the warmest of the whole summer. In addition, we can also see that their love for each other has intensified through many situations. For instance, when Tom goes out of the room to get some cold drinks, Daisy kisses Gatsby on the mouth, right infront of Nick and Jordan. This shows that Daisy loves Gatsby so much that she can do anything infront of anyone. In the afternoon, the five of them decide to go to New York City to cool off. Tom thinks this is the perfect opportunity to spend some...
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