Books and Movies Reviews

Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby: The Women

The women in Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby would likely face a difficult environment in today's modern society.Since the women, however, were the harbingers of today's worldly'women about town' it could be an interesting conjecture as to whether they were the actual foundation and support for the development of today's women. Whether they thought of themselves in that respect is certainly food for thought, but the tone of the book does nothing to propagate that belief.Instead, most of the women in the book seem to be insipid little snipes that are more concerned with shopping, looking good and the next party or event they can attend in order to show off all the results of such shopping.Even such a mundane excursion as an afternoon spent in an apartment in New York with her lover and friends was cause for Mrs. Wilson to don elaborate afternoon wear.In the book we discover that Mrs. Wilson had changed into an "elaborate afternoon dress of cream colored chiffon which gave out a continual rustle as she swept about the room" (Fitzgerald, 35).It was a time when the women were not only looking to impress the men they associated with, many of the ladies in the book also seemed to be acting to impress anyone else of any perceived importance.Their clothing and appearances were what mattered and even common everyday actions seemed to be an attempt to beg attention from individuals of both genders. One expert wrote of Gatsby's women "the right clothes and accessories matter even more.(Donaldson, 2001, p. 188).
The simplicity of their actions is another clue to the inner thoughts of the women in the book.
Allowing for the fact that the women had a limited, but evolving role in U.S. society during the early 20th century, they are still portrayed in the book as being somewhat less than the men in the book, and the men consistently treated them in that manner….