Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 5 (2023)

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 5 (1)

WeilThe Great GatsbyIt has nine chapters, reaching chapter 5 means we've got exactly halfway through the story. So it makes sense that this chapter would take a single event, Daisy and Gatsby's perfectly romantic meeting, and use it to tie together everything that's been established thus far, and also to create such a delicate balance of safety and happiness that that of course everything will soon collapse.

But before the love bubble bursts, enjoy the world's most magical and carefully planned "accidental" encounter.

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Our citation format in this guide is (chapter.paragraph). We use this system because there are many editions of Gatsby, so using page numbers would only work for students with our copy of the book. To find a citation that we have cited in your book by chapter and paragraph, you can either preview it (paragraph 1-50: beginning of chapter; 50-100: middle of chapter; from 100: end of chapter) or use the Search citation function use whether you are using an online or eReader version of the text.

The Great Gatsby: Chapter 5 summary

Nick comes home to find that all the lights are on in Gatsby's mansion. Gatsby wants to go out, but apparently only because he wants to know what Nick decided to take Daisy to tea with. Nick happily obliges and they plan a day after Gatsby has had a chance to mow Nick's lawn.

Gatsby then makes a totally uncharacteristic suggestion to bond trades with Nick (whose job it is to sell bonds and doesn't appear to be particularly good at it or invested in it). Nick is uncomfortable with the quid pro quo (Latin for "something for something", in other words a compromise) sentiment and rejects it.

The next day, Nick invites Daisy over for tea and warns her not to bring Tom.

Gatsby sends someone to mow the lawn, orders a large supply of flowers, is unhappy with Nick's lousy selection of teas and cakes and worries that rain will ruin the day. Then at the last second he freaks out because Daisy doesn't show up, but just then she pulls over in her car.

Gatsby and Daisy meet in Nick's living room in the weirdest, tense, and unimaginable scene. It's not clear if either of them is happy to see the other. You are unable to pronounce two words.

When Nick tries to leave her alone, Gatsby panics and tries to leave as well. Nick calms him down and then stands outside in the rain for an hour to give Gatsby and Daisy some privacy. When he comes back, the two are very different: they're no longer embarrassed, they're much calmer, and Gatsby really shines.

(Video) The Great Gatsby | Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis | F. Scott Fitzgerald

Gatsby suddenly boasts that it only took him three years to earn the money to buy his mansion. Nick questions him about this since Gatsby said he inherited his wealth. Gatsby is quick to say the estate was lost in the financial panic of 1914 and has been involved in a variety of deals ever since.

Daisy then exclaims that she loves Gatsby's huge mansion (she can see it through Nick's window). They go to Gatsby's and he shows them around the now empty house, not taking his eyes off Daisy and her reaction to his stuff.

Gatsby is utterly impressed by Daisy's presence. He is overwhelmed by feelings that he cannot even put into words.

Gatsby opens a closet and begins taking out stacks of shirts and tossing them onto a table. Every imaginable type of shirt color and design is piled higher and higher on this table until Daisy sticks her head in the shirts and starts to cry at her beauty.

It starts raining again and Gatsby shows Daisy that his house is across the bay.

Nick sees a photo of Dan Cody, who according to Gatsby was his best friend until his death.

Gatsby shows Daisy a bunch of newspaper clippings he has collected about her (they would have appeared on the gossip pages describing fancy parties and high society). He gets a call about Detroit but quickly hangs up. This is the first time in the novel that he doesn't apologize for answering a phone call.

Nick tries to walk again but has to stay again. Gatsby asks Ewing Klipspringer, a guest who seems to be always in the house, to play the piano for her. Play a funny love song.

Nick finally says goodbye and leaves. As he does so, he sees Daisy whispering in Gatsby's ear and imagines her siren voice holding him captive.

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 5 (2)Daisy's shirt-inspired constant crying has now kicked her out of Brooks Brothers.

Key quotes from Chapter 5

"You sell bonds, don't you, old man?" ... Well, that would interest you. It wouldn't take long and you could be making good money. something confidential."

Today I realize that under different circumstances this conversation could have been one of the crises of my life. But since the offer of a service to be rendered was obvious and tactless, I had no choice but to stop. (5.22-25)

(Video) THE GREAT GATSBY Chapter 5 Summary | Gatsby and Daisy Reunite | ANALYSIS

Nick concedes that what he was quick to dismiss in the moment may have been the moral dilemma that changed his entire future. Apparently, Nick thinks this is his chance to break into the criminal underworld, assuming what Gatsby suggested, some sort of insider trading or similar illegal speculative activity, and so he's stuck on the East Coast rather than retiring. West. .

this is impressiveNick realizes that his ultimate weakness is the only thing that could really excite himMoney. In this way it differs fromGatsby whose temptation is love and Tom whose temptation is sex– and of course also different, because you resist the temptation instead of going all out. While Nick's refusal could be taken as a sign of his honesty, it underscores how well he sticks to the rules of politeness. Eventually, he rejects the idea only because he feels he "didn't have a choice" about the proposal, being "tactless." Who knows what Nick would do if Gatsby were a little softer?

He had visibly crossed two states and was entering a third. After his embarrassment and undue elation, he was overwhelmed by her presence. He had been full of ideas for so long, dreaming to the end, waiting with clenched teeth, so to speak, with an unimaginable intensity. In response, he was now ticking like an overworked clock. (5.114)

On the one hand,The depth of Gatsby's feelings for Daisy is romantic. He lives the exaggeration of all love sonnets and torch songs ever written. After all, this is the first time we've seen Gatsby lose control of himself and his extremely meticulous self-portrayal. On the other hand,Do you really know anything about Daisy as a person?Remember, it's "the idea" that consumes you, not so much reality. The word "miracle" makes it sound like he's having a religious experience in Daisy's presence. The pedestal he put her on is so incredibly high that he can't help but be disappointed.

Suddenly Daisy slipped her arm under his, but he seemed preoccupied with what he had just said. Perhaps it occurred to him that the colossal significance of that light was gone forever. Compared to the great distance that separated him from Daisy, he seemed very close to her, almost touching her. It seemed as close to the moon as a star. Now he gave the green light again at a pier. The number of his enchanted items had dropped by one. (5.121)

Almost as soon as he finally got it,Daisy begins to fade from an ideal object of desire to a real human being.. No matter how potentially wonderful it is, it could never live up to the idea of ​​an "enchanted item" since it's not magic or anything. This also begs the question, "What's next?" for Gatsby. If you have only one goal in life and you reach that goal in the end, what is the purpose of your life right now?

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 5 (3)Is Gatsby more in love with the idea of ​​love than the actual person he's obsessed with?

The Great GatsbyChapter 5 Analysis

Now let's consider how this chapter fits into the book as a whole.

complete themes

love, desire and relationships..After a previous chapter of Tom and Myrtle together, we have a chapter of Daisy and Gatsby together. At first glance, the pairs are diametrically opposed.Tom and Myrtle are rude and vulgar., constantly chattering about nothing, driven by materialism and physical desire, without a drop of love or romance between them. On the other hand,Gatsby and Daisy are humble and embarrassed, almost speechless, overwhelmed with emotion., and they have a physical well-being with one another that Tom doesn't inspire with either Daisy or Myrtle (both of whom he physically injures to varying degrees). Gatsby's love for Daisy has a supernatural quality that is often described in mythical or religious terms. But the chapter already anticipates that raising the relationship to such heights makes the fall almost inevitable.

(Video) Gatsby, Chapter 5

morals and ethics.Nick is tempted by what he later realizes is the moral dilemma of his life. Twice Gatsby offers to make a deal with him. There are two ethical challenges to this offering.

  • First,Gatsby suggests paying Nick for services rendered.– that inviting Daisy to tea and letting Gatsby see her at Nick's is a transaction that has to be paid for somehow. He exudes an odd pimp-whore vibe about what Nick is asked to do, which would spoil some of the fairytale romance Gatsby seems to be aiming for.
  • Second, since it takes place right after the Mr. Wolf encounter,Gatsby's business proposal is likely illegal(Inside information? Speculation? Printing fake titles? There are several possibilities.) It connects Nick to the lawless crime that this novel associates with the new "Wild East".

Symbolism: Gatsby Shirts.Gatsby spoils Daisy with his selection of exquisite shirts in a display caseboth self-adulation and a submissive appeal. On the one hand, this unique moment resembles the complicated courtship dance of a male bird: the shirts are the plumage of the peacock. These t-shirts are a visual representation of just how far Gatsby has come - he can literally shower Daisy with his wealth. But on the other hand, the desperate manner in which he displays them is linked to Nick's remark that "I think he has reevaluated everything in his house according to the degree of reaction he has drawn from his beloved's eyes" (5.111 ). He wants her approval and puts everything in his heart for her to judge.

Reasons: weather. For the first time,The novel goes into detail about an extreme weather event. The intermittent rain sometimes limits and sometimes facilitates Daisy and Gatsby's afternoon together. The rain allows for moments of physical comedy. For example, Gatsby's plan to "accidentally" turn up at Nick's for tea with Daisy fails when he turns up soaked (meaning he obviously wasn't just trying to visit Nick, who would in such a situation). ?) .

The rain also creates physical and emotional boundaries, allowing Daisy and Gatsby to remain in their private world. This literally happens when they are unable to visit the villa grounds and have to stay in their home. But more importantly, this happens when the rain creates a fog that hides Daisy's house across the bay. She doesn't have to think about her marriage or her daughter: she can exist with Gatsby surrounded by a magical-sounding "pink and gold wave of foaming clouds" (5.134).

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 5 (4)Once a magical light experience (the green dock light) becomes obsolete, Gatsby replaces it with another (sunlit rain clouds). Maybe you just need a lamp.

Crucial character traits

  • Nick agrees to invite Daisy over for tea and have a "chance" meeting with Gatsby. He refuses the offer to do business with Gatsby.
  • Daisy and Gatsby finally meet! It's awkward and awful at first, but after an hour alone, they both seem very happy. The trio then tour Gatsby's mansion. Impressed by Daisy's presence, Gatsby is almost angry. He throws many, many of his shirts in front of her until she cries at how beautiful they are.
  • Nick continues to try to leave Gatsby and Daisy alone, but remains attached to their company. Compare this to how he tried to get away from Tom and MyrtleEpisode 2and also forced to stay.
  • Daisy and Gatsby are left alone, obviously full of feelings for each other and in their own little world.

What's next?

Laugh at a soaked Gatsby without an umbrellaNOlatest film adaptation— is one of the few physical comedies in the novel, and this movie nails it.

Discover theanother key symbol of the chapter:green light at daisy dock.

Check theMain reasons for the chapter: the rainy weather and the glaring lack of alcohol.

to consign toSummary of Chapter 6, or visit theSummary of Chapter 4.

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pull. Anna Wullick

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Scored in the 99th percentile on her SATs in high school, Anna studied English at Princeton and received her PhD in English Literature from Columbia. He is passionate about improving student access to higher education.

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