In The Story, " The Great Gatsby", How Does Fitzgerald Describe Myrtle Wilson? Does Her Physical Appearance Reflect Her Character In Any Way?


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Jack Buckby Profile
Jack Buckby answered
Myrtle Wilson is a 'thickish figure of a woman' according to Fitzgerald. He also reports that she is in her 'middle thirties' and that even though she is not very beautiful, she still seems attractive.

The Great Gatsby is essentially a story about class and social mobility. In the 1920s Fitzgerald describes, there were two types of people. One type went to glamorous parties, lives extravagantly and found money easy to come by and to spend. The other kind is being forced out of business by mechanization, denying them the chance at upward mobility no matter how hard they try.

Myrtle Wilson belongs to this second class of people, struggling to survive. While George continues day after day with the false hope of success, his wife turns to an affair with the wealthy Tom Buchanan. This is driven by her belief that she is actually of a greater social standing than indicated by her life circumstances.

She lets Tom push her around because she would rather be treated poorly by someone who has money rather than being cared for by someone who has none.

Do does her physical appearance reflect her character? Perhaps, firstly, because youth is associated with ambition. If she were older, perhaps she would have come to terms with her social standing and that would chance her attitude to relationships.

Also, still seeming attractive is important because this is something she is able to use in order to pursue her goal of being a higher class.

You could say that an attractive lady's character is always going to be affected by her looks as when young, the pretty girls are the centre of attention regardless of their social status. This could lead to an assumption that life will always put them at the top of the pecking order. Only in maturity do they find that beauty is not enough. Then they must find alternative means to fulfil their ambitions.
Sibyl Zoe Profile
Sibyl Zoe answered
The Great Gatsby is a popular novel by the Author F. Scott Fitzgerald that was published in the year 1925. Myrtle Wilson is the mistress of Tom Buchanan. She is described as a thickset figure in the book. She is in her mid thirties, is stout but carried herself very sensuously. Her face has no gleam of beauty. She is basically a suffocated woman who is tired of the man who she has married. Her physical appearance totally reflects her character. Her face has no facet or beauty and her character is the same.

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