The Great Gatsby – Chapters 1-2

How does Nick describe himself at the beginning of the book? He reserves judgement to others
Why has Nick come to the East? To learn the bond business
How does Nick describe Tom Buchanan? Arrogant, wealthy, athletic
Who is Jordan Baker? What does Nick find appealing about her? Daisy’s friend. He is attracted to her
How does Daisy react to the phone calls from Tom’s woman in New York? She feels like she has to be polite
What is Gatsby doing when Nick first sees him? Standing in his yard, looking at a green light
Notice how many times Fitzgerald uses the words hope, or dream. Why does he do this? It is the American dream
Does Nick reserve judgement in the novel? He judges Tom for his affair. He is open minded in general
What is the day and year during the first scene at Daisy’s house? June 7. 1921
What facts do you know about Nick, and what do you infer about him? What kind of a narrator do you think he will be? He grew up with wealth. well bred, polite, and relatively mellow
What image does the author use to describe Jordan Baker? What does it mean? She is on a couch, buoyed up as though upon an anchored balloon; she does not have a care in the world
How does Nick react to Jordan? He is instantly curious about her
What does Tom’s behavior reveal about his character? He’s a very mean man
How does Nick meet Tom’s mistress? They took a train up to New York and it stopped near her husband’s shop
How does Myrtle react to Tom’s arrival? She ignores her husband and walks straight up to Tom
Describe George Wilson. How does he react to Tom’s arrival? Spiritless, slightly handsome. Excited to see Tom to fix his car because he needs the money
How does Myrtle behave as the party progresses? As she drinks, she becomes more outspoken and uppity
Why, according to Catherine, has Tom not left Daisy to marry Myrtle? Daisy is a Catholic and doesn’t believe in divorce. (though Nick knows she isn’t)
Why did Tom break Myrtle’s nose? How is this consistent with the author’s description of him in Chapter I? Judging by his treatment of Myrtle and his wife Daisy, what seems to be Tom’s attitude towards women? She keeps repeating Daisy’s name. He is abusive towards women
Describe the “valley of ashes.” What does it look like and what does it represent? A massive trash dump. It represents the rotting American dream.
Describe Mr. Wilson and Myrtle. Do they seem to fit into the setting? They are a poor couple. They don’t fit.
What more have you learned about Nick in this chapter? Is he similar or different than the people he spends his time with? He’s very different. He is more of an observer

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