preview

How do Daisy’s words reflect the role of women in F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel, ‘The Great Gatsby’?

Satisfactory Essays
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s consideration of gender roles throughout The Great Gatsby reflect the sheer unbalance between the value of men and women in traditional households. Throughout the novel women are seen living a life controlled by men, and accepting their loss of independence for the materialistic values of life. Women follow the social code of the 1920’s to seem ladylike, leading them to succumb to uniform and object like personas. Scenes of blatant sexism are the strongest representation of the gender gap and the loss of morals throughout the 1920’s.
“I’m glad it’s a girl. And I hope she’ll be a fool – that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.” (page 17)
This line embodies the most common stereotypes about women created in the 1920’s. Daisy is a beautiful yet superficial woman who is a victim of the disorder in her own social environment which, at that time, is influenced by gender and money. She realizes her own marginalization but rather chooses to live a luxurious life controlled by men. This line suggests to the reader that unlike other characters, Daisy is aware of her position as a woman and realizes that she has no power over her own life and understands that ‘ignorance is bliss’, meaning she believes that being a ‘beautiful little fool’ would allow a girl to live a life of luxury while being oblivious to living a life controlled by men.
Throughout the Novel F. Scott Fitzgerald establishes gender roles through women being seen as the second sex. The female characters throughout the novel follow the pattern of being unspoken, plain and proper, proving true to the social dynamics of the 1920’s and therefore further influencing men to be the greater sex:
Benny McClenahan arrived always...

... middle of paper ...

... such as lying, playing sports and cheating. Fitzgerald includes Jordan to break the pattern of social conformity of the women of the 1920’s.
Overall F. Scott Fitzgerald’s visualization of women in The Great Gatsby demonstrates women living a life controlled by men and fortune. It is apparent that Daisy is conscious to this and decides she’d rather continue leading a materialistic life under Toms control. Fitzgerald’s female characters all follow a rigid pattern of social code, making them uniform and almost object like. Not only are the social contexts of the 1920’s highlighted throughout the text but also is the use of blatant sexism towards women, especially the violent mistreatment of lower class women. Jordan Baker breaks the social conformity of the 1920’s, creating the possibility of a brighter future in the gender balance between men and women in the future.
Get Access