Great Gatsby

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The Two Faces of Gatsby’s Parties During the 1920’s, everyone is making easy money off the stock market and lives their lives to the fullest potential. The decade, also known as the Jazz Age, brings a lot of glamour into many households; one of which belongs to Jay Gatsby. In the novel The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gatsby shows his wealth by arranging humongous parties every so often. At these parties most of the people who are in attendance are uninvited, but at the same time are also very rich. Although Gatsby’s parties and the wealth they represent are initially portrayed as alluring and glamorous, in Chapter 3 Fitzgerald subtly undercuts the apparent allure and glamour of both through specific words and images he uses to describe the party scene and the behavior of the partygoers. The scene appears alluring and glamorous, yet there is a subtext, an undercurrent of negative images and commentary running through much of Fitzgerald’s description which undercuts the apparent allure and glamour, suggesting the destructive side of wealth. Both, the positive and the negative images are represented when the servants, the setting and the entertainment are being described in the chapter. Behind the scenes of a beautiful party, there are those that do not have much fun; they are the hard working servants. These servants work long before the party starts to get it set up and during the party to keep everyone happy. Before the party starts the servants have the job of driving people over to the Gatsby’s house, and it is described in a following manner, “On week-ends his Rolls-Royce became an omnibus, bearing parties to and from the city…while his station wagon scampered like a brisk yellow bug to meet all trains.” From the impression, it seems like a normal preparation for the party which actually makes it sound very courteous, but a closer look at the description also reveals the hard work that the servants do in order to keep these parties on track. They are like a “brisk yellow bug” in a way that they give it their all to get their job done, but at the same time they are unappreciated and can be squashed like a “bug” when their services are not required anymore. During the preparations for the party and the clean up from the old one, there is another huge example of the mistreatment of the servants, “[servants] toiled all day with mops and scrubbing-brushes and hammers and garden shears, repairing the ravages of the night before.

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