Contrast that with the East Egg home of Tom and Daisy Buchanan: "Their house was even more elaborate than I expected, a cheerful red and white Georgian Colonial mansion overlooking the bay. The lawn started at the beach and ran toward the front door for a quarter of a mile, jumping over sun-dials and brick walks and burning gardens — finally when it reached the house drifting up the side in bright vines as though from the momentum of its run. The front was broken by a line of French windows, glowing now with reflected gold, and wide open to the warm windy afternoon."
Nick Carraway moves from the Midwest to become New York a bond salesman and finds himself the neighbor/tenant of Jay Gatsby, a wealthy bootlegger and forger, who has a huge estate bordering his modest cottage. Gatsby is well-known for throwing fabulous, hedonistic summer parties on his estate in 1922 West Egg, Long Island. Gatsby befriends Nick and enlists him in to broker a meeting between him and his former love Daisy Buchanan, Nick's cousin now married to wealthy Tom Buchanan. Snobbish and selfish, he flaunts an extramarital affair he is having with the slatternly wife of a local proletariat garage owner. Nick consents to arrange a meeting with Gatsby and Daisy, a rendezvous that will have tragic consequences. Written by [email protected]
Scott Fitzgerald was , in his own words, “a moralist at heart.” He wanted to “preach at people,” and what he preached about most was the degeneracy of the wealthy. His concern, however, did not lie with the antisocial behaviors to which the rich are prone: acquiring their wealth through immoral means, say (Gatsby manipulates the American financial system and dies a martyr), or ignoring all plights from which they have the means to protect themselves. Like many American moralists, Fitzgerald was more offended by pleasure than by vice, and he had a tendency to confound them. In The Great Gatsby, polo and golf are more morally suspect than murder. Fitzgerald despised the rich not for their iniquity per se but for the glamour of it—for, in H. L. Mencken’s words, “their glittering swinishness.”