color themes in the great gatsby Essay

Submitted By elatiabroadfoot
Words: 978
Pages: 4

“The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, is a novel filled with sadness, joy, mystery, lust, secrets, and most importantly symbolism. Fitzgerald’s use of color as symbolism, is the most diverse example you will find in the story. As you are reading you may discover that there are a few colors that hold deeper meanings than the others. The three colors that stood out the most, in my opinion, are white, yellow, and green. Let’s start out with the color white. The way Fitzgerald used white in this novel as a representation is almost in the way you would perceive the color by looking at it. When something is white it gives off an untouched and pure vibe, it has the ability of distracting the view of something or someone who may not be exactly that. Daisy is presented a lot in this novel wearing white or being surrounded by white things. Especially in her younger years. You wouldn’t exactly call Daisy innocent in this story, which is quite peculiar in which why she would be wearing it. That’s when you have to search a little deeper. Daisy is very materialistic and somewhat corrupted by money, and it is obvious. White is being used as a sort of mask, in an effort to make her look innocent and pure, and at the end of the story you find this to be very untrue. A couple of other characters that also are represented by the color white to an extent are Jordan Baker, and Gatsby. Jordan is very high strung and surrounds herself, and defines herself by her class. She is often described as wearing white perhaps in an act of trying to not look poor and to look pure. It almost overpowers personality. When Gatsby finally reconnects with Daisy again he is wearing a white suit, he wanted her to think of him as his old innocent self, like the last time they were together. Gatsby is the real innocent side, whereas Daisy and Jordan are not as much. Green is a color you see every day. It represents life and nature, from the trees to your own lawn. It is a very conservative and earthy color, but Fitzgerald didn’t really incorporate that when he used this color. Take the light at the end of Daisy’s dock for instance. It was green, Gatsby would sit and stare at the light with wonder and hope. It represented his past, present, and he hoped it would his future as well. Green would be a good color to represent Gatsby throughout the story. He built his future with hope. When Dan Cody died he still had high hopes of a great future and made it happen. When Gatsby died he was filled with hope that Daisy would call. Everything he did for the next five years after Gatsby and Daisy were apart he did for Daisy hoping she would come back to him.
Though maybe not as obvious as white or green, yellow holds great symbolic value in this story as well. Depending on the shade, yellow can look very similar to the color gold. Gold is the wealthiest color of all. Yellow is almost like a fool’s gold, an imposter. Representing deceitfulness and posing as something. At Gatsby’s party right after Jordan is referred to as being slender and golden they, “sat down at a table with the two girls in yellow” (Fitzgerald 68), these girls represent the color very well. They both have some secret to tell about Gatsby and some information, and you find out that none of it is in fact true. They were both pretending to know the extreme high class that Gatsby represents. Gatsby’s car is also described as being “a rich cream color, bright with nickel (yellow)” (Fitzgerald 68). Though some people may…