The great gatsby
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The Great Gatsby. LP3. The Construction of Jay Gatsby: Creating Identity. Real Name: James Gatz Age: 17 From: North Dakota Parent’s occupation: Farmers. Creating Identity.

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The Great Gatsby

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The great gatsby

The Great Gatsby

LP3


The construction of jay gatsby creating identity

The Construction of Jay Gatsby: Creating Identity

  • Real Name: James Gatz

  • Age: 17

  • From: North Dakota

  • Parent’s occupation: Farmers


Creating identity

Creating Identity

  • “I suppose he’d had the name ready for a long time, even then. His parents were shiftless and unsuccessful farm people — his imagination had never really accepted them as his parents at all. The truth was that Jay Gatsby of West Egg, Long Island, sprang from his Platonic conception of himself. He was a son of God — a phrase which, if it means anything, means just that — and he must be about His Father’s business, the service of a vast, vulgar, and meretricious beauty. So he invented just the sort of Jay Gatsby that a seventeen-year-old boy would be likely to invent, and to this conception he was faithful to the end.” (Chapter 6)


Deconstructing the passage

Deconstructing the Passage

  • We will be coming back to this passage may times throughout the novel, but after your first reading, what are some terms that are difficult?

    • Platonic:

      • of, pertaining to, or characteristic of Plato or his doctrines: the Platonic philosophy of ideal forms.

      • pertaining to, involving, or characterized by Platonic love as a striving toward love of spiritual or ideal beauty.

      • ( usually lowercase ) purely spiritual; free from sensual desire, esp. in a relationship between two persons of the opposite sex.

    • Meretricious:

      • alluring by a show of flashy or vulgar attractions; tawdry.

      • based on pretense, deception, or insincerity.

      • pertaining to or characteristic of a prostitute.


A son of god

“a son of God”

  • He was a son of God — a phrase which, if it means anything, means just that — and he must be about His Father’s business, the service of a vast, vulgar, and meretricious beauty.

    • Meretricious:

    • alluring by a show of flashy or vulgar attractions; tawdry.

    • based on pretense, deception, or insincerity.

    • pertaining to or characteristic of a prostitute.


A son of god1

“a son of God”

  • Does this statement have a positive or negative connotation?

  • What is Fitzgerald’s meaning?

  • What purpose does this provide to our understandingof Jay Gatsby?


Platonic conception

Platonic Conception

  • “The truth was that Jay Gatsby of West Egg, Long Island, sprang from his Platonic conception of himself.”

    • Platonic:

      • of, pertaining to, or characteristic of Plato or his doctrines: the Platonic philosophy of ideal forms.

      • pertaining to, involving, or characterized by Platonic love as a striving toward love of spiritual or ideal beauty.

      • ( usually lowercase ) purely spiritual; free from sensual desire, esp. in a relationship between two persons of the opposite sex.


Forms activity

Forms Activity

  • On a piece of paper draw one animal and one object.


Plato s theory of forms

Plato’s Theory of Forms

  • Plato splits up existence into two realms:

    • the material realm

    • the transcendent realm of Forms.

  • Humans have access to the realm of Forms through the mind, through reason, given Plato's theory of the subdivisions of the human soul. This gives them access to an unchanging world, invulnerable to the pains and changes of the material world.

  • Why did Plato focus on such a topic?


Plato s problem

Plato’s Problem

  • How can humans live a fulfilling, happy life in a contingent, changing world where everything they attach themselves to can be taken away?

    • Plato’s response: Theory of Forms

    • Christianity’s response: The gift of Faith


Plato s theory of forms1

Plato’s Theory of Forms

The six main properties of the forms are:

  • Transcendent- the forms are not located in space and time. For example, there is no particular place or time at which redness exists.

  • Pure- the forms only exemplify one property. Material objects are impure; they combine a number of properties such as blackness, circularity, and hardness into one object. A form, such as circularity, only exemplifies one property.

  • Archetypes- The forms are archetypes; that is, they are perfect examples of the property that they exemplify. The forms are the perfect models upon which all material objects are based. The form of redness, for example, is red, and all red objects are simply imperfect, impure copies of this perfect form of redness.

  • Ultimately Real - The forms are the ultimately real entities, not material objects. All material objects are copies or images of some collection of forms; their reality comes only from the forms.

  • Causes- The forms are the causes of all things. (1) They provide the explanation of why any thing is the way it is, and (2) they are the source or origin of the being of all things.

  • Systematically Interconnected - The forms comprise a system leading down from the form of the Good moving from more general to more particular, from more objective to more subjective. This systematic structure is reflected in the structure of the dialectic process by which we come to knowledge of the forms.


Platonic conception of himself

“Platonic Conception of himself”

  • “The truth was that Jay Gatsby of West Egg, Long Island, sprang from his Platonic conception of himself.”

    • What does this reveal about Jay Gatsby’s true identity?

    • What is the problem with creating oneself in this manner?


Platonic perfection

Platonic Perfection

  • No one has ever seen a perfect circle, nor a perfectly straight line, yet everyone knows what a circle and a straight line are.

    • Perceived circles or lines are not exactly circular or straight, and true circles and lines could never be detected since by definition they are sets of infinitely small points.

    • But if the perfect ones were not real, how could they direct the manufacturer?


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