Gatsy Writing Assignment: Close Reading II

PURPOSE: to give you another chance to practice looking hard at a specific passage -- because practice makes better (nobody's perfect!)
LENGTH: 250-400 words
This is like the very first short assignment you did, but this time I want everyone to work from the same passage -- the great ending that Fitzgerald wrote for The Great Gatsby, the last seven paragraphs of the novel.

You could spend pages writing about this one rich, resonant passage, and I want you to keep you analysis under 400 words, so don't try to analyse the whole passage. Instead, identify an image, an action, a pattern, an issue, &c., in the passage that interests you. Start with a close look at how that works in this passage, but then go on to connect the image/action/pattern/issue/&c. up in some way with the larger novel.

To make this work, you'll need to start with something that interests or intrigues you in the passage. Then you'll need to figure out why you think Fitzgerald includes it in this ending, and how it says something about the larger story -- Gatsy's story, or Nick's story, or America's story, &c. To make this work, you'll need to deal both with very specific details -- the exact words of a part of the passage, &c. -- and with a larger reading/interpretation of the novel you can relate the specifics to.

I'll be curious to see how many different ideas come out of this one passage.