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The Great Gatsby. Chapter 9: Gatsby’s legacy. Nick and Gatsby: alone together. I found myself on Gatsby’s side, and alone. I was responsible, because no one else was interested I wanted to go into the room where he lay and reassure him: “I’ll get somebody for you, Gatsby.”.

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The Great Gatsby


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    1. The Great Gatsby Chapter 9: Gatsby’s legacy

    2. Nick and Gatsby: alone together • I found myself on Gatsby’s side, and alone. • I was responsible, because no one else was interested • I wanted to go into the room where he lay and reassure him: “I’ll get somebody for you, Gatsby.”

    3. Nick and Gatsby: alone together • When the butler brought back Wolfshiem’s answer I began to have a feeling of defiance, of scornful solidarity between Gatsby and me against them all.

    4. Gatsby’s activities • “Young Parke’s in trouble,” he said rapidly. “They picked him up when he handed the bonds over the counter.” • Bond = a formal contract to repay borrowed money with interest at fixed intervals. • Implies that Gatsby was involved with stolen bonds.

    5. Mr Gatz • Read about son’s death in Chicago newspaper. • Calls Gatsby “Jimmy”. • Awed by splendour of Gatsby’s house. • “Jimmy always liked it better down East. He rose up to his position in the East.” • “If he’d of lived, he’d of been a great man. A man like James J. Hill. He’d of helped build up the country.” • James J. Hill = railroad tycoon from St. Paul, Minnesota, like Gatsby.

    6. Klipspringer calls • Klipspringer (played piano in chapter 5) phones but only wants tennis shoes back. • No friend to Gatsby though stayed with him.

    7. Wolfshiem • Wolfshiem: “I made him.” • Hooked up with Gatsby not long after he met Daisy. • Seems genuinely upset that Gatsby is dead but “when a man gets killed [he] never like[s] to get mixed up in it”.

    8. “Nobody came.” • Mr Gatz waits anxiously for mourners. • At funeral: Nick, Mr Gatz, minister, 4 or 5 servants, postman, Owl Eyes. • No message or token acknowledgement from Daisy. • Owl Eyes: “Why, my God! they used to go there by the hundreds…The poor son-of-a-bitch,” he said.

    9. A story of the West • That’s my Middle West – not the wheat or the praries or the lost Swede towns, but the thrilling returning trains of my youth…I am part of that… • I see now that this has been a story of the West, after all – Tom and Gatsby, Daisy and Jordan and I, were all Westerners, and perhaps we possessed some deficiency in common which made us subtly unadaptable to Eastern life.

    10. The East: “a night scene by El Greco” • In the foreground four solemn men in dress suits are walking along the sidewalk with a stretcher on which lies a drunken woman in a white evening dress. Her hand, which dangles over the side, sparkles cold with jewels. Gravely the men turn in at a house – the wrong house. But no one knows the woman’s name, and no one cares.

    11. Leaving Jordan • “You said a bad driver was only safe until she met another bad driver? Well, I met another bad driver, didn’t I? I mean it was careless of me to make such a wrong guess. I thought you were rather an honest, straightforward person. I though it was your secret pride.” “I’m thirty,” I said. “I’m five years too old to lie to myself and call it honour.”

    12. “Careless people” • Tom told Wilson to find Gatsby knowing full well what he would do. • Thinks it was justified. • They were careless people, Tom and Daisy — they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness, or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made…

    13. The promise of a dream • I became aware of the old island here that flowered once for Dutch sailors’ eyes — a fresh, green breast of the new world. Its vanished trees, the trees that had made way for Gatsby’s house, had once pandered in whispers to the last and greatest of all human dreams … man must have held his breath in the presence of this continent … face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate to his capacity for wonder.

    14. Nick’s final thoughts Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgiastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that’s no matter – tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms further…And one fine morning – So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.