nd DaisyGreatGatsby: Theme and character anlysis of Tom and DaisyGreed, Corruption, the Search of OnesSelf and the 1920’sThe characters’ search of their own identitiesand the struggle that ensues is the most suffusive theme throughout TheGreat Gatsby . The fact that we never really know the characters, and thecorrupt immoral things they do, directly represent the 20’s high societylifestyle. The characters continued to cheat on their spouses, let moneybecome their obsession, and debated the American dream for the hopes ofone day obtaining happiness. But the fact remains that they have no truemorals or ideals of themselves as individuals.
These are a group of peoplewho –no matter how cocky and self- confident they seem– have absolutelyno idea of what they are doing (as many men and women of the 20’s do not). Tom and Daisy are two examples. Daisy is a hospitable character who hada love for parties and tended to lose herself in them and the drinking. Daisy once said, “What’ll we do with ourselves this afternoon, and theday after that, and the next thirty years?” This quote not only means shelives for one day at a time never thinking of the future, but that shetruly has no idea of what to do with herself.
She is like loose changefloating around wandering from party to party, man to man, friend to friend,in a big house in East Egg with no sense of purpose. She once attemptedto plan something when she first reunited with Nick. She said, “What’llwe plan? What do people plan?” meaning she has never had to make decisionsnor has she had much responsibility. Not only does she have no purpose,she has no morals. She literally killed a woman and went home to eat coldchicken.
What more, her lover was killed and she left on a trip missinghis funeral. Show me a woman who has no morals or goals and I’ll show youa woman who is searching for her own identity. Tom Buchanan is a small man hiding in abig house with an equally large ego. In fact, he once remarked that womenrun around too much and meet the wrong kind of people. This statement isboth arrogant and ironic because he runs around with the wrong people,and women run around with him- he being the wrong people. Also, when statingthis he was most likely referring to his wife, and subtly putting her downfor her relationship with Gatsby in a most conceited way.
Tom is not acaring or sympathetic man. He did not attend his mistress’s- Myrtle’s-funeral. Tom cared a great deal about his image. Enough to uncover thehistory and truth about his wife’s lover, and openly embarass him for it.
Tom is so desperately an empty man that he believes he can define himselfwith exterior belongings. He is trying to find his identity by lookingfor happiness in nice cars (his is a ridiculous yellow luxury vehicle),money and a good woman- be it he has to cheat on his wife to do so. Butwhat about if the money runs out? What happens if his wife finds anotherlover also? or one of his women kills the other? One day he will look himselfin the mirror and not like what he sees, and only then can he finally forgetabout the image and just be. To best describe Daisy’s, Tom’s, and the1920’s high society’s relentless quest for money and aimlessness existenceis Daisy and Tom’s own relationship. They were once young lovers with ahold on the world like their hold on eachother but that too tarnished likea gilded cup and saucer.
Tom once carried Daisy down from the punch owlso her feet wouldn’t get wet. But the weight of time has pulled at theirlove until Tom was seen as a racist man reading The Rise of Colored Empireswho depends on a mistress to fulfill his need of lust and to be apart fromhome life, leaving Daisy ignorant and smiling. She hoped her daughter wouldbe a fool of a girl so nothing would hurt her, a lesson she learned fromliving with Tom. While their marriage seems to be falling apart Daisy findsa man from her past- Gatsby-who has a heated desperation for her love-enough so to acquire a huge home and beautiful shirts, and throw