Reading Club: The Great Gatsby


H: Hi guys I just read an article about jazz age on weibo. Do you know what is the Jazz Age?

J: Emmm…I know a little bit about it, but I didn’t have a deep understanding about it.

N: I know! I just browsed the website about it. The Jazz Age is Gap between the rich and the poor exaggerated. As a result, the American Dream became inaccessible.Americans began to sightlessly pursue wealth. The youth in America experienced both prosperity in economics and poverty in spirit. And do you know which author was greatly inspired by the historical background and wrote immortal book?

H: Scott Fitzgerald! The author of The Great Gatsby?

J: Yes, living in the Jazz Age and with his luxury-pursuing wife, Fitzgerald was involved in numerous parties.Fitzgerald was an author who wrote based on real experience, so we can say that without the flashy party, there will not be such masterpiece or a totally different novel.

H: Referring to Gatsby, it reminds me of that he owned a fancy mansion with the marble swimming pool and over forty acres of lawn and garden. He had parties every night with the people all around the world who were so-called the Upper Class.

J: Gatsby’s parents were poor farmers. Daisy was the person who made him, and he loved her, so Gatsby chose to enter the upper class for Daisy. The middle class and upper class will be loyal to his class after entering society, and only those at the bottom will choose to betray their native class. Daisy was not the Daisy before, she could only choose the same class, because that was her nature.The American aristocracy was scornful of Gatsby’s riche. Material civilization caused a frenzy at the time of the storm, when people only pursuit of material civilization, there are a lot of people go to drill the gap can be traced back to the bottom of his identity have no identity, there is no faith in cultural background, only by the weak identity of classes exist to resist outsiders. Then the allocation of resources is not in accordance with the class division, when rules have not yet strictly formed. Gatsby blindly rushed into the upper society. Taking his money and the lack of money at an early age gave him the oppression of just stumbled to the tragedy of the story, until the end.

H: Do you think it is worthy of sympathy?

N: May not. In the resource integration, to bring the education resources according to the city and family ability of division, and including vision, ability training and quality cultivation, character and so on there are resources division unfair to bring negative effect. Capital contributed to the economic prosperity, economic prosperity, however, inevitably lead to high empty materialism, hedonism and spirit and hedonism, materialism is protestant ethic etchant.

H: Do you know the Mirror Theory?

J: This is a very famous Theory: the mirror theory. At birth, the baby thinks that the mirror is the other person, and it is later realized that the mirror is himself. At this stage, the baby first recognizes himself. Before that, the baby had not established a “self” consciousness. From the mirror stage, the baby established the opposition between “self” and “others”.

N: In the experience of Gatsby, the expansion of the material contributed to his own transgression category in the controlled class, transgression process, he put between “self” and “others” segment as a journey, but the rules in the division of time itself has infinite hybridity, the classification to upset, and a new question. Gatsby did not anticipate that he packaged “others” as “self” and internalized into a part of himself, but did not anticipate the time factors of participation, and pursued a life full of futility.

J: And I was first attracted by “Great” in the name of the book.

H: The real hero lies in the love of life after knowing the darkness of life. Gatsby had seen Daisy’s materialization, but he still chose to be the “sleeps”, and he had a last look at Daisy. Even if everything is false, the time has gone, and it will still leave something.

N: And I think there are some interesting symbolizations in the novel. For example, it was the green light that guided all the outstanding behavior, involving constructing his mansion and holding flashy parties, of Gatsby.

H: The green light is Gatsby’s longing for happiness. He imagines that the perfect Daisy is an important part of it. The other part is material and social status. The American dream contains more meaning. But these three points should be the most important component. So a lot of people are highly summed up as American dreams.

N: Green normally represented the Hope, same as this novel. Gatsby built a mansion on the other side of the street, and tried to hold the green light at night, hoping to hold the hope and get Daisy. The Green Light was defined by Gatsby, however, he didn’t achieve his dream at the end of the story.

N: What about another symbolization, the eyes of the god?

J: In Europe the eyes of god is the god of all creation. He always stand on high, coldly looking at all evil, lies. Though he knew everything, but he won’t go to pity, not to change their fate. This pair of eyes watching the town, the city, and what was happening in the country: greed, ugly, violent, bloody, drugs, decay, deception, curses, cheating, all of all, this was known as the eye of god brand in that stood quietly, it is believed that one day, when time has come, all the consequences will show up.

本期Reading Club由三名活泼可爱的女生组成,她们谈论了喜欢《了不起的盖茨比》的原因,也讨论了爵士时代,盖茨比为什么是了不起的,并用“Mirror Theory”解析了Gatsby的形象,最后讨论了作者象征手法的运用,欢迎大家收听。

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