Women Buchanan. Women such as Daisy are restricted

Women in “The Great Gatsby” expose the fact that women’s lives are not vastly improved even with the right to vote and a change of social requirements allowing them to be more revealing. Instead, they are forced to cheat and manipulate men with there looks, charms, and sexuality to improve their unsatisfactory lives. This concept is shown through Daisy’s insensibility and facade of purity and within Myrtle’s promiscuous affair with Tom Buchanan.  Women such as Daisy are restricted to a social code that demands conformity, composing a role of surrender and state of inferiority to men. Daisy is aware of her feminism and confesses to Nick that she hopes her daughter  “to be a fool” because it is “the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.” The dim future Daisy has predicted for her daughter not only shows her cynicism for the world they live in but also her idea of women in the world. In her eyes, women have no place in this world to be intelligent, only beautiful and daft. To her, that is the best way for a woman to get ahead in life. Daisy never exerts power over a group; rather, she seems to move with crowds, doing what is expected of her. Gatsby describes Daisy as having a “voice full of money.” Gatsby explicitly ties Daisy and her magnetic voice to wealth for he is attracted to her not because of who she is, but because he sees her as the ultimate prize.  Instead of loving Daisy as a person and seeking to understand her, he becomes carried away with his image of her. Daisy herself is acquainted with be the American Dream, in the eyes of Gatsby, for she is as alluring and ultimately as fickle and elusive as the promises of a better life. Along with Daisy, many women of her time are deep-seated and unspoken. They allow their voices to be suppressed, empowering their inaction to cause severe consequences. Daisy’s beautiful voice makes her both irresistible and dangerous, especially to men, allowing her to toy with Tom and Gatsby, like puppets on a string. Her indifference between her two lovers reveals her selfish and manipulative mind. Daisy’s name also contributes an element to her character. When a daisy is mentioned, an image of a pristine and immaculate flower is pictured. However, the flower is alone and without support. Daisy is the flower in this sense as she is weak and powerless causing her to grasp onto whatever support she can, that being Tom Buchanan and his wealth after Gatsby leaves for war. With this, Daisy stands for the relatively consistent position of many women in the 1920s. Myrtle Wilson is a representation of this dependency as well. Through her relationship with Tom Buchanan, she plays the role of a wealthy woman to ultimately mask her reality. Myrtle’s character portrays the universal lust for a life out of the realm of possibility, yet she still finds a way into that impossible life by lying and cheating. Her appetite that many women like her desire for is wealth and security. She finds those components in Tom but instead misleads her thoughts to believe that she is indeed wealthy and protected by a crooked man. Nick’s description of Myrtle’s body also reveals a contribution to the role of women in The Great Gatsby. Nick reccolects that “she carried her surplus flesh sensuously as some women can” referring to her gaudy and vulgar presentation of her body. This description of her “surplus of flesh” emphasizes her overall lack of intellect and personality and the way that she “sensuously” carries herself gives her character a shallow and despicable depiction. However, with the flashy performance, Myrtle represents the opposite of Daisy who is refined and reserved, not to mention, Myrtle wields considerable social power within her group, as seen by how her guests fawn on her at the Manhattan party she throws. However, both learn that they can’t escape forever through their affairs. Obviously, their most significant difference is that Daisy gets to walk away from the novel unscathed, while Myrtle gets killed. Myrtle’s role as a mistress shows her disposability, and in the same way that Gatsby overestimates his value to Daisy, Myrtle overestimates her value to Tom.Daisy and Myrtle’s similarities reveal how hollow the progress of the women’s movement was then. Despite the gains the movement made in the early twentieth century, they were both trapped in unhappy marriages, and forced to exploit their feminine charms only to slightly better their current lives. The Great Gatsby exposed this failure and accentuated the shortcomings, procuring a sentiment that while the butterfly may be beautiful, it is still trapped.

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