"The Great Gatsby" chapter 1-6 by: F. Scott Fitzgerald

Essay by cheaterboyzJunior High, 9th grade December 2004

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Chapter One: The novel begins with a personal note by the narrator, Nick Carraway. He relates that he has a tendency to reserve all judgments against people and that he has been conditioned to be understanding toward those who haven't had his advantages. Carraway came from a prominent family from the Midwest, graduated from Yale and fought in the Great War. After the war and a period of restlessness, he decided to go East to learn the bond business. At the book's beginning, Carraway has just arrived in New York, living in West Egg village. He was going to have dinner with Tom Buchanan and his wife Daisy. Tom was an enormously wealthy man and a noted football player at Yale, and Daisy was Carraway's second cousin. Jordan mentions that, since Carraway lives in West Egg, he must know Gatsby. Another woman, Jordan Baker, is also there. She tells Nick that Tom is having an affair with some woman in New York.

Tom discusses the book "The Rise of the Colored Empires," which claims that the colored races will submerge the white race eventually. Daisy talks to Carraway alone, and claims that she has become terribly cynical and sophisticated. After visiting with the Buchanans, Carraway goes home to West Egg, where he sees Gatsby come from his mansion alone, looking at the sea. He stretches out his arms toward the water, looking at a faraway green light.

Chapter Two: Fitzgerald begins this second chapter with the description of a road running between West Egg and New York City. A large, decaying billboard showing two eyes (advertising an optometrist's practice) overlooks the desolate area. It is here, at a gas station, where Tom Buchanan introduces Nick Carraway to Myrtle Wilson, the woman with whom he is having an affair.