The Great Gatsby- Color Symbolism

2136 Words Nov 28th, 2008 9 Pages
The Power of Color Colors are used many different ways by many different people, but are used mainly as a reflection of the way one feels or his or her own personality. This idea is depicted through the different characters created in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, set in the post-World War I era. The novel evinces the major themes through the use and explanation of many diverse colors. Jay Gatsby, the most significant character in the story, leads a very materialistic lifestyle. Hoping to gain back his old love, Daisy, Gatsby uses his money to impress her, hopefully leading to their settling down together. Daisy's second cousin once removed, Nick Carraway, is the link that helps to connect Gatsby and Daisy. Nick "deliberately …show more content…
Caught in the romantic atmosphere of the night, Nick puts "[his] arm around Jordan's golden shoulder" (Fitzgerald 79). Both description serve to symbolize the fact that she is happy and quite valuable, as of now, to Nick. While gold and silver are two valuable colors to the characters, gray symbolizes the corruption behind the money. One depressing color that is quite significant to the story happens to be the very dull gray. Gray represents the neutral, dull and corrupt society that resides in America. It is seen, through some of the structures, that corruption has made a big impact on everyone surrounding them. One such structure, that is only mentioned briefly, is the villages in France. When Nick first meets and talks to Gatsby, they bring up how both men look familiar to one another. Ironically, they both took part in some section of World War I, Gatsby, in the "ninth machine-gun battalion," and Nick, in the "Seventh Infantry" (Fitzgerald 47). During the quick recapitulation of the war, "[they] talked for a moment about some wet, gray little villages in France" (Fitzgerald 47). These villages represent the corruption and destruction that the war has brought to the people and society of France. Another gray structure is the windows at Gatsby house. Even though Gatsby is a man of money and success, "the gray windows" on his home signify that this happiness is just a facade, and that in reality, there is much fraudulence hidden within Gatsby
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