Welcome to book club! Recently Jae committed to reading for pleasure and wanted to read an American Classic, so of course, Angela reached for the quintessential high school read: The Great Gatsby. Now that both of us have read it, listen to 2 modern girls thoughts on a formerly modern time!
- Welcome to our first One Stop Book Shop episode! As promised, here’s the link to The Great Gatsby: https://openpathcollective.org/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIme38qNnE9QIVCI2GCh3gTwlbEAAYASAAEgLSbvD_BwE
- Remember one of our pillars is education! So we always try to include an educational element in every episode
- If you’re interested in Jazz Age, you can visit these sites:
- The Jazz Age | American Experience: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/monkeytrial-jazz-age/
- The Roaring Twenties: Definition and Facts: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/monkeytrial-jazz-age/
- Jazz Age – Digital History: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/monkeytrial-jazz-age/
- In English Literature, everything is open to interpretation; however, there are 2 things you have to consider always
- There is a way that the author intended for the events, symbols, character traits to be interpreted based on their purpose of storytelling and the time it was written
- There is a different way that audiences of the different times and groups will accept the story, and thus the lessons, meanings, and ideals of the story are unaffixed by the passage of time
- Fact Check 1: Just to make sure, here’s the definition of Prose: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/monkeytrial-jazz-age/
- Classic Literature is defined by the writing style and elements used, and is not based in the likability of characters or story
- The cast of The Outsiders can be found here: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/features/monkeytrial-jazz-age/
- If you’re interested in reading Beautiful Monsters: https://www.amazon.com/Invisible-Monsters-Novel-Chuck-Palahniuk/dp/0393319296
- The Great Gatsby movies can be found here (IMDB only, as their not available on basic streaming services):
- The Great Gatsby (2013): https://www.amazon.com/Invisible-Monsters-Novel-Chuck-Palahniuk/dp/0393319296
- The Great Gatsby (1974): https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0071577/
- You can listen to The Great Gatsby (2013) soundtrack here: https://open.spotify.com/album/0ke0VwcET1D6neauEyk4U4
- Fact Check 2: According to what we’ve found with naming and ancestry, it’s William’s that are called Tripp, but rather men who have the suffix of third/III
- If you want to learn about the Bechdal Test: https://bechdeltest.com/
- If you want to watch Persona: https://open.spotify.com/album/0ke0VwcET1D6neauEyk4U4
Transcribed by https://otter.ai
I pledge myself to the pod loyal I'll always be a P to start a D at the end, and an O sitting in between. Welcome back to on In Omnia Paratus. I'm Jae like the letter.
And I'm Angela, also known as AVO
O kay, Angela, I saw this TikTok and I need you to really think about this because I've been trying to think about this and I'm getting too overwhelmed. Okay,
if you're at your best meaning your shaved your wax, no surgery has happened and you can't change your physical shape. Like say I'm going to drop 20 pounds today. Look at your current physique you like look 10 out of 10 you get eyelashes that fit your eyes correctly, you can contour correctly, like everything currently that you could do non surgically is to the 10s. Okay,
You can wear shape wear, you can wear whatever you want. make yourself feel like that. 10 Okay, okay, what celebrity Do you think you could seduce? And this is not a celebrity crush. This is someone who you would look at and want to and would want to go home with you.
Wow. So I don't pay a lot of attention to celebrity couplings or dating rumors. So I don't know who's tight by would be Oh, that's really hard. So you didn't settle on anyone.
I was trying to think of things and then like, knowing me, I went to too much to personality, and I was like, shit, this isn't gonna work. It's like At first I was like, Okay, well, Noah Centineo. He's really spiritual right now and like into super stupid things. But then he also dated Alexis Ren, who was a model. So I wouldn't like to deep into it's like Ryan Reynolds is old, even though he's super funny. Like he's old. I was trying to really think of all of the factors together and I settled on Kj APA somehow. I don't know why. renewal videos. He's from New Zealand or Australia. So I get the accent. He's attractive, but not like 10 out of 10 but it's also like someone who would have social currency if I told our peers the story. And I didn't think Cole Sprouse. Actually, I thought, of course, rasakan that's not gonna work out. So I moved over to Kj.
Okay, all right. I mean, I don't think that's bad. He's, he's, is the red hair natural? No. Okay.
we're fine. I couldn't think of many peers or not peers, I guess like celebrities from the ages of like, 25 to like 35, either the ones who are 35 I still think are playing high school or super fathers. So it's hard to decipher within that range. He really
is. I'm, I'm trying to think about it right now. And I don't know if I can name anyone who's actually in my age range, and will even be generous and describe my age range as 21 to 35.
I mean, if they're celebrities, yeah, well, like At first I was gonna say Marcus from Germany and Georgia, but then I felt I was low balling myself because he's like new celebrity. And I feel like I could do a little bit better than new celebrity. But like, I couldn't also go all the way to like, top celebrities. And Taylor waldner would be a great another example. But he's all Christian now. So it's like, Okay, any musicians, athletes? I don't know. I've never really been one for celebrity crushes. This isn't a crush though. This is like someone just on their physicality. You think if you wanted to take you home would Oh, okay. Alright, so I have no clue what they currently look like. It's just like an animated characters.
No, no, this is those. It was another TikTok. And it was a Can I can I say this word on the podcast and an F marry kill. Oh, yeah, that's fine. Okay. So it was all classic CW shows. So I was stuck between Gossip Girl chase Crawford and Ed westwick and Vampire Diaries, Ian Somerhalder, and Paul Wesley. Ed westwick. is
accused of rape multiple allegations no since Gossip Girl so like when he joined Tick Tock and like I was sending it. Everyone's going crazy. I got like six o'clock tomorrow. Hey, everyone, just so we all know how excited you are that like this alleged rapist is on tik tok. Like maybe let's stop sharing all of the content. It's like, yep.
Oh, man. wants to go see his new movie. Okay,
I guess we're going we're not you spend on snacks to a woman shelter.
Excellent idea. Okay. All right. We're going with Vampire Diaries. Either Paul Wesley or Ian Somerhalder. Okay, so you think of like you saw them at a bar at a you're 10 out of 10. Like one of them would take you home? Well, you know, in my distant fantasies. I think that I'm slightly Nina dobrev esque. And and they both date her at once. No, my distant fantasies But no, just just em digest and dated him
dated her. Excuse me.
Okay. Um, oh, all right. Yeah, it would, it would probably be one of them.
I also ran through, of course, the cast of Degrassi because there are so many generations in there, and they are always around our age. So I'm like, Who would I have wanted to? And I like to think I think the first guy i thought was attractive on Degrassi was true, and he had gotten with the influencers for a while. Okay, was he also on awkward? Oh, no. Oh, I think I could Get I think I could convince Bo whenever at a bar Mitch off Meachem Mitch off. Sure. or Colllin I don't know if I'd wanted to Collin ,
he can sing though, right? Because he was also on Glee.
Oh, shit. Oh, yeah, he's back in the running. Yeah, this is a lot harder than it sounds I know. Because it's like, I'm not trying to be like, Oh, I could get anyone but also you don't want to undersell yourself if you're at your 10 because I saw this other tech talk yesterday of like, why is what we all look at as relatable as like, I'm sad. Sometimes I'm like, I'm life's not going great. Like, why aren't we all relating back that like, we're hot shit and like, can do what we want and like, have the power because she's like, if we only relate on the things that are like, sad, it's not we don't grow from it. And it's like, I kind of agree. And I kind of disagree, I think you shouldn't be portraying either as relatable shouldn't be the standard of relatable because yes, we all have bad days. But if that's what we're using to find our connection with other people, then like, we're only connecting over being sad.
I think that's true. But I think a lot of that also goes into the idea of what we're sharing with other people and the things that we're trying to seek out common bonds with. Because if you're only sharing instances where you're sad or upset or frustrated, or where things didn't work out as the way that you try to relate with other people, I feel like that's where the bad standard comes in.
Yeah, I feel like it's an overcorrection from filters and filler and everything on social media to everyone's like no, to be relatable, you have to be like burping on camera and like not not editing and all of that. And I think it's about I think they're the days where you're in a cave, watch 10 things and what I like about you and eat like a bag of chips, and then there are other days where you get your hair done, go on a vacation and like buy a bunch of outfits for it. And both sides should be shown to give the most accurate picture of what quote relatable should be, could be here. Speaking of unrelatable lifestyles, what are we talking about today?
So today, we are launching our first book club episode on The Great Gatsby. So earlier this season, I found out that j did not take English Lit for her last two years of high school. So she missed out on a quintessential rite of passage reading The Great Gatsby written by Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald in 1925. This is the story that brought us the mysterious man named Gatsby who throws lavish parties and the name of love and the great impact that he has on one man. So of course, I couldn't let this travesty go on remedied. So in what I hope will become a regular series for us, I submit forth to you in Omnia paratus is one stop book shop and a Reverend book club that hosts spirited discussions on classics and camp chat books and collections. And of course, I'm calling it one stop bookshop because we will link various bookstores where you can find these books
and ideally shopping local within your own city would be best you know,
it's very lucky right now most of our listenership we know where they're located. That's not creepy at all to say.
Okay, more than half of the people who are listening to us are friends still so
I know but that's still creepy. So I somehow didn't read most of the classic books that you're quote unquote supposed to read between Middle School in high school. My cousin went to a private school and I know he read them all. Some people at my school did I don't think all of my friends did who went to my school because my school is structured. If you didn't take AP classes, then you didn't do kind of the traditional books necessarily. I'd heard some of them like I read Catcher in the Rye is about the kid, right? Yes. Hold on. I read that one. I read that one about the angsty kid. All I kind of remembers, I think he has a prostitute in it. I read Lord of the Flies. I read catch 22 I read A Streetcar Named Desire. So it's like I read Death of a Salesman I read some like classic er books, but the big ones like Gatsby Gone with the Wind controversies Grapes of Wrath, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest like I've never read my reference point for One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is an episode of psych. Oh, love that episode. Molly Ringwald, she does great things. So I wanted to see what Rory Gilmore and book nerds like Angela found in these books or what most high school kids had to deal with with reading this book. And because I would not classify myself as like a big reader. I didn't want one too big to make sure we could wrote quarter and timely for this episode, which is why we chose Gatsby because unlike a lot of the greats, this book is under 200 pages. It's the perfect size. Angela, take me back to you and your hyped up nice or ankle sock uniform with whatever like accessories and Legally Blonde it you did to it and tell me what we learned in English class.
So I went into my basement and I found an old notebook that had a partial discussion of Gatsby in it. So I went back and I pulled out some of my old discussion outlines. So today we're going to go through the pre reading section, vocabulary assessment novel outline discussion questions, and then we'll be subbing out the AP prep and practice portion for a film section and our opinions. What do you think we're going to take an accelerated course in what would usually be a One month study of this book.
Oh my god, one of my friends already was I feel like I've been in school longer listening to your podcast than I have been since I graduated. And after listening to that, I'm like, oh God, we promise it'll be entertaining. I have a lot of very I don't know if they would be unpopular but I have a lot of confused opinions on the piece mainly being Why is this the standard we go with and accept as like good literature, but we'll get into that whenever it comes to it.
Well, would you like to start there?
I normally get post reprimanded for not following set outline. So since I am channeling my inner will say model and I'd be like, more like model and then at least I tried to pay attention half the time will let you lead.
Oh, geez. Does this make me Paris?
You said it not me.
Okay. All right.
You could be Brad.
I'm gonna pass on Brad, because I really don't want to sing again. When did I sing before? Um, I don't know what episode you saying haggis. This theme song? It doesn't count. Got it. Continue. Okay, taking into consideration that we're treating this like a high school study. Of course, I'm using my old high school study discussions. But Jay, we're going to treat this as a high school topic with a college discussion. Nothing's going to be right. Nothing's going to be wrong. All opinions are valid. It's just whether or not you have the information to back it up. Sound good.
You sounded like such a frickin politician. Like there's no your answers are valid, but they're also not what I heard.
Well, no, it's that literally part of what I love about English is that everything is open to interpretation. That's why I hate English. That's why I'm that's why I'm a stem girl through and through. Very interesting, okay, see, that's what I like about it. Because it's always evolving, there's always a different perspective, you might think you fully understand something, and then you can meet someone else who has another opinion that can completely flip your upside your understanding upside down.
And that's how I go into my third existential crisis of the year.
Okay, all right, where we'll try to move quickly and gently. So in the pre reading section, before you study any book, it's important to understand its background. And this is everything from the author's life history, literary movements of the time, any major political, economic, or social events, all of these influence the book, and they're going to help build the lens through which we use to examine the basis of this novel. So one of the reasons that Gatsby is incredibly popular academically is because it checks almost every box, it's full of symbolism, and witty, elegant prose. Like there are so many different literary devices in here.
And then historical is a prose. And is it is a pros plural is a pros plural, like is pros a singular or plural? Um,
well, I'm gonna go with singular, like it's celebrate their language. Oh, so is it a style? So technically, I've. So I didn't see this in the dictionary definition. But when I went through like a list of high school terms last night that are presented in California, and pros actually use now also to determine sequence of events. But I went through a lot of my books and prose was not defined that way gone. I feel like this is my version of Are You Smarter Than a fifth grader? And how does that make you feel?
I mean, I chose the book, or I chose to do this because I was curious about why classics are classics and why they're revered the way they are,
I mean, I think you'll do very well. And one of the things also to understand about classics, is that there are classics in every genre, not every classic is a classic for the same reason. It's almost a subjective classification, in that there might be one element in it that makes it better than others that that use those elements, or there might be several different ones that hold it to a different standard. Can you give me an example. So Gatsby is considered a classic because of the elegant style of the writing way that descriptions are used, and the colorful adjectives and things like that. It's what draws you in evokes emotion and takes you along this ride. It's not because anything about the content is particularly wonderful and super exemplary of American life. That's no classic is a classic because of the content. Most classics. People actually don't really enjoy those stories. They have characters that they hate. There's weird things about setting and but they're classics because the language draws you in. The language helped me to sleep twice while I tried to watch the movie to prep for this. So I think that's actually a common problem that a lot of people run into. I think that personally, Gatsby is one of those books that you have to do a second pass and you should generally do it with some time in between in order to fully understand it. I think that it's kind of like when actors talk about playing the role of Juliet when you play Juliet. You're too young to understand when you're old enough to understand Juliette, you're too old to play her. Ooh, that sounds deep. See, this is the side, I think you need to show people more. You're very smart and wordy. And you hide it behind the likes. Yeah, no, yeah,
This is the way you would speak if everyone spoke this way.
Yes, I don't know, it was not something that particularly well. I mean, it always bothered me growing up, but then as an adult, when I've tried to have conversations with other people and make friends, and I thought that we had moved beyond the way and I thought that we could all move beyond criticizing, like the little quirks around language and hobbies and thought processes and all of that, but I still encounter it quite a lot. When I try to bring up a book that I'm reading with most people still, the answer that I get most often is, huh, yeah, I just I don't think I'm smart enough for that. I don't really do books, and then conversations just come to a grinding halt.
Yeah, that's one of the reasons I became friends with you. You're like my human dictionary.
Oh, thank you. Okay, back to pre reading. Another reason that Gatsby is great for studying in high school is because it checks like all of these different historical boxes to for background here. These are some of the things that you should know going into the novel. It's written, published and set in the 1920s in the period right before World War Two and the Great Depression, also known as the roaring 20s. But for the purpose of our discussion, we are noting that this is the Jazz Age, and the Jazz Age was a huge cultural and artistic movement, which impacted every area of life and art. And it brought around its own particular literary movement, which influenced many authors and brought about a style of describing life in an unapologetic and unveiled way. So we're going to talk about that a little bit more later. But that's important to know politically, the women's movement was making huge strides that led to a new independence for women and brought about the flapper prohibition was technically legislatively strong with the ratification of the 18th amendment, but authorities were more than happy to look the other way. During this period, there was also a huge economic boom that led to huge wealth and extreme poverty, lavish parties for all but a lavish lifestyle, or only we're gonna say, like the 1%. And most importantly, Fitzgerald drew a lot from his own life to create what he called his extraordinary and beautiful masterpiece, The Great Gatsby he like Gatsby came from new money and move through a world of opulence where he always felt like an outsider. And always in search of acceptance. He and his wife Zelda met under similar circumstances to Daisy and Gatsby at an officer's party, where they had a whirlwind romance that led to an engagement broken because of a question of lifestyle, aka Zelda didn't think he had enough money. Then, about two years later published his first novel gained money status and acclaim. And then within a few weeks, she married him. He even used quotes from their real life as dialogue in the novel. I just realized we could name this episode, Jay Gatsby, but like with my name, oh, I really like that. We're doing that. So I know that that sounds like a lot. But trust me, in high school, we usually spend like two weeks going over all of this. So I boil it down for you.
It's like summer school, but in a podcast.
Yeah. If we have any like Gen-zers, high schoolers, totally feel free to pull us out for AP season.
Oh, my God, that'd be a great niche, right? Like, I don't know what movie this is. But I think I already talked about this in another podcast. So maybe you'll know, there's some movie Rob loaded years ago. That's like an English book that everyone has to read. And he's like, every year I get tweets, and like comments about people with this exact reason. I know why. Because it's from all the young people that has a book that they have to read for English class. Oh, it's
probably the outsiders. That sounds familiar. Yeah, I think there are a ton of big names on that one
didn't read that one either.
It's okay. It's it's kind of sad.
I focused on Greek mythology and Shakespeare. Oh, we should do a Shakespeare episode. Oh my god. If we do I have like an uncle who's like a Shakespeare like fanatic and I would see if he could do it. Or we could have my twin do it. I feel like if you're gonna do Shakespeare, you need an actor. Oh, or my uncle has like a friend who's like really funny. She's awesome. Oh, okay. But my point is, if we're doing Shakespeare, we need like an actor.
That's fair. That's fair. Okay. All right. So that's our pre reading section Jae vocab. Let's talk about the language of the novel, which you said put you to sleep.
Oh my god. Thank goodness, you warned me about those first 30 pages. I didn't not read them. I did go back to like, make sure I was getting certain parts of it. But like, holy shit,
it's a slog, especially the first time you read it in. So in high school, our teacher actually insisted on reading the first 30 pages aloud to us in class. She's like, so you couldn't make it through to actually get to the interesting part of the book that is a very generous teacher. It felt like I just read 30 pages of adjectives. Oh 100% of real sentences. So being now almost 10 years older than I was when I first read this book. Wow. Wait, I'm excited. 10 years older.
Yeah, I'm like, wow, you must be.
Yeah. Okay, a decade later. terrifying.
Yes. So a decade later, I'm now reading this book again. The first 30 pages were not awful. Now I actually understand them. So and you'll have to tell me if this makes sense to you as well. So Nick caraway, our narrator, he is a lost soul. And I think that oh my god, I just got where you're going with the gospel comparison. Is he is he Penn Badgley? He is. So Nick caraway is kind of lost. And as our narrator, he has a lot of disjointed and kind of apathetic thoughts. But his focus comes into play. When Gatsby is in the picture, he kind of drifts almost in and out of consciousness. And in these first few pages before he meets Gatsby, and he has any sort of relevance to him, he floats along and we float with him with nothing real concrete to attach to so it's not that these first 30 pages are actually boring don't need to be there or don't make sense. It's that they're not meant to make sense. Until we actually meet Gatsby
my brain hurts
Yes, I'm really not like I am someone who definitely for a lot of their life had a chip on their shoulder about reading so like, this, like brings me back to like high school reading days where it's like, I I didn't do poorly in English classes, but like, they definitely weren't my strong suit. Like this is my oh my god. Like I remember having to do this, like the critical thinking section and like, interpreting quotes gig, like getting paragraphs and being like, write an essay about like, this paragraph and what it means like, Oh, my God, bringing me back.
It's okay. It's okay. Shake it off. We're doing we're doing college. We're doing college discussion, we just do. Do you agree? Do you disagree? I mean, you hate.
We'll come back to this in 2031. My was my decade follow up of those 30 pages. Well, luckily, we're self funded. So we'll probably still be around. Um, I think because I'm not a reader and a particularly because I'm not like a literature reader. Because you gave me the warning. I didn't take it too difficult. Like, take be too hard on myself when reading those pages. I'm like, this just doesn't make sense. And then I reread it after I read the sparknotes summary to see if I got the main points of it. And it still didn't make sense, but it gave me a little bit more context when we when rereading it, which is how I came to the conclusion of too many adjectives.
Okay. Your explanation makes sense. I understand your explanation as to why it's okay that it doesn't make sense. But I don't in the words of Marie Kondo, that doesn't bring me joy. I like books. That makes sense. Okay, remind me to never have you read beautiful monster that is not a lady gaga song. No, but it actually when I heard it, it did remind me of a lady gaga song. It's a novel by Chuck Palahniuk. And in it it's the way that he writes he's incredibly stylistic. And he this this novel is actually pretty cool you every chapter you have to flip it's one of those that God how do I describe it? What's the term it's almost like a Choose Your Own Adventure at the end of every chapter, it's like and then turn to page 54. And then you have to flip the books up upside down. It's like and then you finish that chapter and it's like, go back to page 32. Then you have to flip the book again and read there and finish that chapter. And then you just keep going back and forth like that. I
felt that's how I felt watching Dr. Stranger made me sick. Alright, nevermind, we'll never open that book. It's like Bobby. Oh, kind of that's a good way to describe it. Okay, so you know, my opinions on Nic and as soon as you told me the Gossip Girl thing, and they just couldn't like, Oh my God, he's I don't know if Gen Z would define him as like a sad boy. But like, that's how like in my imagination of what Gen Z would define. He kind of seems it kinda I also think Gen Z would call him a pick me I think that's the term I think also be a pickney
what is that?
I don't fully know what me here I'm going to text my Gen Z experts right now. And okay, follow up. I'll have an you define what a sad boy or girl and up Pick me are. We'll see if I get a response before the end. But it to me it sounds like that's what he is.
Okay, was there any character that you like?
Not like, at in, not in their entirety. But I think kind of I saw their value to the story by the end. But like, it's just a lot of very troubled people who could use therapy and for the amount of money they have should be in therapy.
Five Points to J. Good job. We're not supposed to like any of these guys. Like I like the Tiffany jewelry that was in the movie. That was very pretty. I don't know if it's Gerald really intended for us to like any of them, but rather they all serve this purpose in his novel of making us examine society. So J.
Society is shit basically.
Do you think that much has changed? Between the their world then and our world now,
I think, Oh, I think Tom Buchanan would have stormed the Capitol. Oh, totally, totally. He would have started the Capitol Daisy would have covered for him. Jordan would have called the FBI. But just so that she could have said that she was a witness to everything that happened. Nick probably would have been watching from the hotel room as they struggle to capital too afraid to actually Stormer himself, even though he wasn't sure if it was right to do and Gatsby would have thrown the after party. I don't know if Gatsby would have tried. I don't know if Gatsby would have been involved. He's way too wrapped up in Daisy, but all of them clearly. I thought I saw the movie all the way through. I clearly didn't watch the movie after finishing the book. Cuz I didn't know anyone died. Spoiler alert. Your people died. Yeah, no, I clearly didn't finish the movie. I think I've just watched the party scenes.
Oh, my lord.
Like you said The best part is his visual symbolic language that they can do artistically in film. So those were the only scenes worth watching. Because the dialogue and the characters suck, Lord. Okay, so did you watch the Baz Luhrmann version, or did you watch one of the older ones? Originally, I saw the Leo one. Okay. But I was told to watch the I think it's 1984 version as well, but I couldn't find it for free. So someone would like to sponsor me in watching that movie, feel free to Venmo me.
I've only seen the Lia one, but I really like it. I think that the way that it's set up, and the way that like Baz Luhrmann puts his movies together, it really reminds me of what it's like to look back on memories. Everything is simultaneously so vivid and yet disjointed, which I think also worked in really well because I think the movie tried to capture some of like Nick's disjointed ramblings, but they they made it make too much sense. Interesting.
I was told the older version does better with the characters, like the actual acting and the roles and the portrayal of the story versus this one is much more obviously Big Bang theatrical like eye catching and like fun to watch because of like, the colors and the outfits and like the budget of course, excellent soundtrack to again, I think I fell asleep. I don't remember the soundtrack. I'll send you I'll send you Oh, my playlist does Ilana don't re your is that be off? Is Beyonce on that one, too? Yes. No, Beyonce was 50. We also was on the soundtrack, or am I getting car confused when when she did 50 shades? I know they both do slow versions of songs. Yes. So she she's on both great. And I think both are crazy. And love. Okay, love that. I'm not. I'm not crazy. So
I think in 50 shades. Maybe it's crazy in love, but I don't know if Beyonce sings it.
But in Gatsby she does.
I think so. God. Well.
Alright, Jay, do we want to talk any about symbolism?
One can try.
Okay. So in your opinion, which Fitzgerald symbols has more meaning the green light or the eyes of Dr. TJ eckleburg?
I feel like bringing it probably the eyes but like in the movie, the light. I feel like a light is very visual to imagine versus like to see it versus like I feel like imagine seeing eyes I don't know. Okay, all right.
Did either of them have a great impact on you
explain to me what the symbols were trying to get across.
Okay, so what they were representing. So the green light at the end of Daisy's dock that gots that Godspeed, that Gatsby that Gatsby stares at Knightley is symbolic of not only Daisy, but the entire dream of a life that he has for himself because as you know from the book, he's wanted something more for himself ever since he was small. But as he grew, and then he met Daisy, all of that became intertwined with her and her presence in his life. And so having
is Dan Humphrey, just all of the sucky parts of the characters.
Okay, so I think that Dan Humphrey is Gatsby but instead of going out and finding people to write about him, he decided to write about himself. He was his own Nick caraway because he went out created this he just all the characters in Gatsby know he's Nick and Gatsby, Serena and Blair have parts of Daisy Chuck is Tom Buchanan. And unfortunately, much like in Dan Humphreys novel inside Nate is a nonexistent character. Damn, yeah, but so where, where Gossip Girl differentiates itself from Gatsby is that Gatsby's about the American Dream failing and Gossip Girl it's the American Dream realized. It's where all of these learners then were able to actually project themselves outside of like their privilege and their bubble, learn to grow a little bit do some of the hard work and actually get what they wanted. Whereas Gatsby trapped himself in an illusion from five years previously and did not want to move on with his life.
Whoo, I can kind of. See like parts of Nate and Jordan.
Okay, tell me about that
always around and kind of like involved but like not a main character. Okay, like, especially when he kind of goes into politics. I feel like Nate is always walking that line of like ethical and non ethical. I mean Jordan is much more unapologetic about it. That reminded me a lot of Jenny Humphrey, huh? I feel like I would pull more Sebastian Stan I don't remember chippers that Aaron tveit Aaron today
trip close enough. Also,
why did they call people named William Tripp?
I don't know what will be excited for you to fact check that in the show notes.
See, like I get Rob being Bob. I can even Richard go with? Yeah. Well, I know. I don't understand that. I want to actually I don't understand jack for john. And I don't understand bill for will were the names just too common so that they had to come up with like a secondary. I've never heard john jack. What?
Oh, yeah, I know several people whose names are john. And they go by jack.
Nothing's like a white people thing.
They are all white. Yes. Me, frankly, although wills for bills I know are also white too. So
maybe they were trying to be more unique than the other white name they were given? I don't know. Maybe we'll all find out. But I think putting that comparing Goswell to Gatsby in that way. I understand. It's more entertaining, or at least thought provoking for me to hear it compare that way. Because a lot of the things I read because after I read the book, I googled word for word, why is the Great Gatsby a great novel, or something to that extent. And I found a lot of articles of like, why you should read it after like why you should read it, what it means for culture, what it did in symbolizing, he said the American dream and materialism and social class and all of these things. I was like, Okay, I get it. But I think for me, it's one of those things similarly to how a manual auto said post after final rose. It's like, like all history is meant to be remembered not all is meant to be celebrated, I think is the quote. And I feel like Gatsby is celebrated. But I feel like Gatsby is a better tool for remembrance, but it's revered as if we're celebrating it can still interesting, like at one point, it was one of the burned books, right?
So I don't know, I found it on a few banned lists more recently, but nothing really from the time when it came out. So like it was published. It didn't do very well. Gatsby only gained public acclaim, I think during World War Two when it went through a second reprint and was sent to soldiers as part of this little book stack that was given to them for entertainment. So only really became popular about 20 years after it was published. So modern book burnings and bannings. Yes, but I don't know about back then. But one of the interesting things that I did, because I will admit, I did peek a little bit into your notes, because I was curious as to what you thought. So I did a little bit of research on banned books in the United States. Why do we still have any sort of books with opposition here? I don't understand that. Can you rephrase that? Okay, here, let's put it this way. Why do we have Why are we censoring books that our Why are we censoring books that are marked for their explicit content? or religious content? Or Yeah, I think those are the two that I saw most often. Like, why are we editing those parts out? Or why are we excluding those books from education? Why are we excluding those books from education? Why are people like getting together at churches to burn them community halls to destroy them? I don't, I don't understand like, okay, so Gatsby actually has only been involved in a few of these. I think there were like three notable instances in the United States. But there were other books like The Bluest Eye Toni Morrison To Kill a Mockingbird Harper Lee roll of thunder hear my cry Mildred Taylor, Catcher in the Rye. I don't. Oh, well, like we said that has prostitution, so then don't teach it to children. But that doesn't mean that you have to try to get it completely banned from libraries and bookstores.
I mean, yeah, but I would say the same thing like not to get too deep and political. I've did same thing about abortion. It's a thing of like, if you're not going to have one, don't do it. If you're not don't want a book, don't read it. It's choosing especially for religious institutions choosing that their way is the way that everyone should have to exist, which is great. And I would be really surprised frankly, if religious organizations were burning gas because I feel like Gatsby is the evangelical dream
White man by any means necessary puts on a facade and opulence of wealth to get a girl and almost succeeds other successful white, all successful white men holding power over women and thriving to some extent where white people are in power and hold the power structure and create the systems Excuse me, we have a live caller. But yeah, I feel like Gatsby is like the epitome of like the ideal of the American dream of how Gatsby wanted to get out of his situation and did and good. And if when people pull from books what they want, I pulled it, everyone's a shady character. And I think Nick is weak. And I think everyone needs therapy. But if you're someone who is trying to get out of your station and then or you're you're bitter, like Tom Buchanan is the whole time of how the I will not use the word he used, but the P o C's are like coming for them. And they need to keep them down. And like you have that same sentiment and then you have Gatsby who's able to get above where he started and shows that there are no real obstacles for them and that they hold the power and not that's just where it exists. And I feel like going into like, why this is a classic novel. It's like well, who held the power to decide this was a classic novel, expand on that. Well, it's the same thing with movies who like the one comparison I have is I remember when everyone thought straight out of Compton deserved to be nominated for an Oscar and it wasn't and now slowly other movies about it's like well, let's look at who's the panel and why are they the panel and I thought the same thing when we were having our conversation about parent Dino like why his turn he know this revere thing and then I don't know if you watch the tech talk I sent you but it was this girl thing like Tarantino movies described by guys who would wanted me to watch it with that, and they say these things like oh my god, like Tarantino still shoots on film, like, isn't that so cool? how he's like sticking to his art. It's like every movie made before 1950 was shot on film, parents, you know, is keeping his art to modern day and I understand why that's something like that's a cool thing. But he didn't invent film. And they kind of it's a lot of mansplaining involved.
So it's a thing of like, okay, Tarantino Well, why? Because who's making the decisions? And who's saying and the Bechdel test? I'm sure none of Tarantino has really passed the Bechdel Test. Oh, true. Probably wouldn't pass any of them. I think they're like, different versions of the Bechdel Test. No, I don't think they could. And so it's the thing of like, like you said at the beginning, classic novels are classic, but it's a subjective term. But I think there are certain things like Gatsby is known as an American classic, which I agree with. But I also think like, we need to stop making words all encompassing, like classic doesn't necessarily mean revered. Great, amazing that it means it's a classic of a time in American history. Yes. Just like the founding fathers were a classic piece of American history. But now in the day and age we are we need to expand on that. It's like okay, Gatsby did x y&z and is a great symbol, a stick piece of what America was like, during that time written by a race of classes stronger. Let's explore that side as well. Do people not explore that side? I don't know, I didn't do in high school. But I feel like when I read the when I was doing a lot of the reading, it was all about, for example, one of the articles from Wikipedia is is Western canon is the body of high culture, literature, music, philosophy and works of art that is highly valued in the West.
I mean, I mean, I think I agree generally that you're correct, because a lot of what I saw in terms of high school interpretations of the Gatsby really don't explore much of when this was written and who Fitzgerald was, and why this is what it is, and what we should take into account when we read it. But at the same time, I think that that's also no, so I completely agree with you. And I think that this is maybe where we balance each other out a little bit. And you kind of like, fill in the gaps of things where I haven't exactly thought it through, because that was never taught to me in high school. But it's also something that I didn't necessarily think that other people didn't understand or wouldn't take into account when they were reading the book.
I mean, it was the 2011 2012 lens.
Yes. But I mean,
that was a reference to Chris Harrison, ah, got it.
To me, I sort of took it as like, Oh, this is school, like, they can't tell us these things. They don't want to tell us these things. I don't really know the reason. But I knew that there was more to the story. And I think that that's something that I think that that's something that we need to make clear going forward. For those who haven't thought about this.
I think it's, I think it's hard. And I feel like an easier situation of this would be sex ed, it's the parents job to teach children and I agree it's parent's job to teach children. However, as school goes, there is a service to supplement that education and to help educate the humans going into the world because that's typically unless you're homeschooled from like five to 18. So it's a kind of figuring that out that balance out because Think of it this way, if you go from five to 18, reading classic books and the way you were taught and whether it was your own critical thinking or your family to disagree with you and kind of to bring in those other factors. Why would you know how could you know
that that is very true. So I guess I guess on that front, I had a really great well rounded education because my Mom reads similarly to I do like my family loves to debate different topics like this and discuss books with each other. And then I was lucky because I went to a private high school and I took way more than the regular English classes. And I took as little as I could get away with. I took extra math classes whenever I could, oh, yeah, I opted out of math as soon as I could. This is why you calculate the tip.
It's really not that hard. You just move the decimal and multiply by two. However, we shouldn't be tipping because we should just be paying people a fair wage. Thank you for coming to my TED talk
I think I guess like my big problem with Gatsby, and it's not the book itself, although it wasn't my favorite book to read. Once you get past the 30 pages. It is like I read it, I made it through. It's how socially, it's perceived before reading it. That kind of takes me the wrong way. Like I don't think it's this great book. But I think it's held up to this extent of like, you haven't read The Great Gatsby like everyone's read The Great Gatsby, why don't and I don't think it now through all the therapy. It's not a reflection of me when people are offended. I haven't read The Great Gatsby, but it's just a way of when you hear the book talked about in other works of art, movies, TV shows reference to by other people. Some more details, you know, it's like, oh, yeah, well, bah, bah, bah, you know, like Tom Buchanan, The Great Gatsby, it's like, well, I
don't think any anyone who is pulling out Tom Buchanan as the reason why you should read The Great Gatsby. No, but
I'm saying like, but I'm saying a thing of like, Oh, well, you know, like f Scott Fitzgerald thing on the American dream, blah, blah, blah. There are plenty of other things that show you about postwar monies 30s like there are plenty of other works, the thing it's like, but this one because it has like the the social systemic stamp of classic, its social currency. And after reading it, I don't feel like it holds the value in which I thought it would prior to reading it interesting.
I mean, frankly, anyone who's reading anything for social currency, in my opinion, probably does not have a good understanding of the book. So I think one of the things that is most often left out of discussions of The Great Gatsby is that it's intended as a satire. None of this is meant to be held up as a great depiction of the time, it's all meant to be a critical reading of what's going on.
Okay, that makes more sense. My thing though, is high schoolers, like you said, Take two weeks to a month to like fully flesh out this book and some hit those points, some don't hit those points, the longer and more distant you are away from kind of all of that messaging of kind of like the critical thinking of it. And it's like a fact you just throw it's like, oh, well, you know, in The Great Gatsby, it's kind of and like kudos, you went to high school you went to public high school in America, the big thing it's kind of like holding Gatsby up in this way socially and holding all art and literature and things known as classics up to a social currency slash moral high ground slash education and intellect and yes is all are a function of how one sees themselves. Because hearing Angela's read every book on the planet should not intimidate and or have any account on my intellect and what I know and what I can contribute, such as this podcast kind of topic. However, it's definitely a thing that certain people hold value and put these things there for their own thing. And when it's already kind of a weak point for me in terms of like reading and books, and being able to understand the simplistic things. Yes, I'm pretty sure simplistic isn't a word. Again, I'm not the worst one here. It's difficult to not reflect and internalize it and kind of look into that part that is feels a little bit of shame without having this vast vocabulary or this vast knowledge of classic books. So I think it's all about kind of internally acknowledging that it's like a weak point in oneself, and then also questioning why things are the way they are. I don't know if I told you about the central I watched doc. Oh, no, we did talk about this. There's a documentary on HBO Max, about the Myer Briggs personality test, and why it ablest sexist, racist, all of these kinds of things. But it's also the most known personality tests in the world. And people easily define themselves by their traits. So I think that questioning as to why we why we use these things, what is their use, I think with all things good, bad, ugly, pretty intellectual reality TV, there's always something you can take away from it. And I feel like rather than putting words such as classic on things that read this, read this piece of art, read this from someone's point of view, and let's talk about it.
Exactly. This is exactly why it's really important to actually experience these things firsthand for yourself and form your own opinions. Because just because someone says something about it does not mean that's right. Correct. The only way to look at it or the most popular opinion. And I think one of the great things about literature and the facts that Gatsby has continually studied is that we now have very new points of view coming about. So Jae, I think that we should end with this last one, and you can let me know how you feel about it. I'm ready in recent years. Some discussions have come up of whether or not Nick caraway is in love with Jay Gatsby.
Oh, I love that. Right. I love that. I don't see that. Okay. I feel like he's very parallel to Jay Gatsby in terms of like he loves the idea of Jay Gatsby. Gatsby loves the idea of Daisy and love the idea of wealth and power. I don't think it's who Gatsby is. As a person. I think it's his perception of the way he thinks Gatsby is perceived by the world. I can see that.
So I think that there's but I love that take, right. Like I think that there's no denying that Nick loves Gatsby in whatever sense whether or not it passes from something friendship or familial oriented into something romantic. I'm not sure of I will probably be taking a third pass on this. But he is very protective of him. And you can tell that he feels a very strong connection to him. So I think that it's something worth considering.
See, I disagree with the strong connection to Jay Gatsby. And I feel like it's a Connect it's,
it's selfish. It's personal for him. It's like he or should should
I call it an attachment instead?
I don't, but I don't think he I feel like it's a fascination very vague. I don't want to say biological very, very like, yeah, it's a very primal. It's very primal. It's not very the only kind of term I can think of, and this is imprinting like he he's fascinated and intrigued by what Gatsby has done and who he is and what he's built and why he is but if like Daisy or Jordan or anyone was in Gatsby's position, he would be intrigued by the success intrigued by the story and the heartache and the toxicity and the mental illness and all of them I feel like, frankly, I think Nick gets a bit of a superiority complex being around all these people, which he has no right to have.
I know that line where he says he's like, I'm the most honest person that I've ever known. And then he immediately MIT admits to lying to Jordan.
So I feel like Gatsby as much as he would like his success. He also uses Gatsby and Tom Buchanan get a character that has like a place to center himself on a moral high ground compared to these people when they're kind of reflecting the worst parts of himself
a plus jae
. Thank you. And you also said my last name, so thank you for letting me get kicked through.
Sorry, I'm likely to get murdered anywhere. We can't even go Can we go to
Atlanta? Oh, right.
listeners today We hope you've enjoyed our discussion. And we hope that you take away from this that you should form your own opinions and question everything and on that note, thank you for listening to this episode of in Omnia paratus grab your coffee bowls. And don't forget to rate download and subscribe on Apple Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts as always where you lead will follow so head on over to @inomniapod on the Instagram and let us know more about what you'd like to hear about bye
The Earth is round and don't get don't trust things you see in Facebook ads
Sign up to receive email updates
Enter your name and email address below and I'll send you periodic updates about the podcast.