The Great Gatsby Questions (Chapter 2)
- What do you find is the most crucial in the plot in Chapter 2?
- How does Nick meet Tom’s mistress?
- How does Myrtle react to Tom’s arrival?
- Describe George Wilson. How does he react to Tom’s arrival?
- Describe the setting of the valley of the ashes where George and Myrtle live. What aspects of the valley of the ashes are symbolic, and what do they symbolize? Use a quotation from the text to justify your answer.
- Why does Tom attack Myrtle at the end of the party?
4. George has blond hair and light blue eyes; he is spiritless, anemic (lacking power, vigor, or colorfulness; weak), and only faintly handsome. He seems hopeful for something that Tom may bring (we’re led to believe it has something to do with a car that Tom was going to sell him).
5. “About half way between West Egg and New York the motor road hastily joins the railroad and runs beside it for a quarter of a mile, so as to shrink away from a certain desolate area of land. This is a valley of ashes—a fantastic farm where ashes grow like wheat into ridges and hills and grotesque gardens; where ashes take the forms of houses and chimneys and rising smoke and, finally, with a transcendent effort, of men who move dimly and already crumbling through the powdery air.”
Valley of Ashes is a dump and its rotting represents rotting American dream.