Monday, November 24, 2008

Symbolism in The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby is notable for its symbolism. A symbol is "something used for or regarded as representing something else; a material object representing something, often something immaterial; emblem, token, or sign," according to's entry for symbol. Read about three prominent symbols: the green light, the valley of ashes, and the eyes of doctor T.J. Eckleburg. These three symbols are material objects used to convey abstract concepts. Can you think of any other symbolic objects in The Great Gatsby? Can you draw the objects and explain their symbolism using Literary Graffiti?

Here is what it might look like:

Here is a larger version of the picture on Flickr. 


Can you think of any other connections between the symbol you chose and other themes? Are there various symbols in the novel that can be tied to one theme? Use the webbing tool interactive to help think about these connections. 

Want to hear what other students have to say about symbolism in The Great Gatsby? Check out the symbolism blog page.

We all visualize the imagery in The Great Gatsby differently. How close does the movie adaptation match how you imagined the story? 

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