Essay title: The Great Gatsby
“That’s what I get for marrying a true brute of a man, a great big hulking physical specimen” (Fitzgerald 16). This phrase is not just a phrase that Daisy uses to describe her husband Tom, it describes the typical man. According to scholar, Bethany Klassen, Fitzgerald presents Tom as the archetypal male figure, a modern prototype ofthe ancient patriarch residing over his family and property. The typical man is what every boy dreams of being and every father dreams that their son becomes. Tom personifies this ideal to a T.
When Fitzgerald breathed life into the character Tom Buchanan, he also awoke his ego and belief in the domination over women. For example whenhis mistress, Myrtle constantly questions Tom about his wife he decides to take matters and her face into his own hands. Striking Myrtle, as if she were a child being reprimanded for annoyingly question Tom about his wife, re-establishes his lack of respect for women. Only a real hulking brute of a man would strike a woman and show her who is boss. Also interestingly when Myrtle is first described in the novel, there is not one description of her personality, there are only words that describe her figure. This is just another way in which Tom sees women.
Tom also uses a vocabulary that reflects his beliefs. For example while shopping for a dog, Mrs. Wilson asks if the dog is a boy or a girl. “It’s a bitch” Tom said decisively (Fitzgerald 32).
Tom could have easily said that the dog was a girl but instead he used a word that is commonly used to disrespect women. Men defined the roles of women in society in the first place, definitions belong to the definers and this may be the reason why the world has certain roles for each gender. “ All right…
I'm glad it's a girl. And I hope she'll be a fool — that's the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool".