Suggested Essay Questions
- Analyze Fitzgerald's conception of the American Dream. Does he view it as totally dead, or is it possible to revive it?
- Is Nick a reliable narrator? How does his point of view color the reality of the novel, and what facts or occurences would he have a vested interest in obscuring?
- Trace the use of the color white in the novel. When does it falsify a sense of innocence? When does it symbolize true innocence?
- Do a close reading of the description of the "valley of ashes." How does Fitzgerald use religious imagery in this section of the novel?
- What does the green light symbolize to Gatsby? To Nick?
- How does Fitzgerald juxtapose the different regions of America? Does he write more positively about the East or the Midwest?
- What is the distinction between East and West Egg? How does one bridge the gap between the two?
- In what ways are Wilson and Gatsby similar? Disimilar? Who is Nick more sympathetic to?
- How does Fitzgerald treat New York City? What is permissable in the urban space that is taboo on the Eggs?
- Is Tom most responsible for Gatsby's death? Daisy? Myrtle? Gatsby himself? Give reasons why or why not each character is implicated in the murder.
The Great Gatsby Essays and Related Content