The Great Gatsby
Francis Scott Key Fitzgerald
Contributed by Karim Chandra
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Chapter 7

This chapter presents a scenario where things get heightened in the relationship between Gatsby, Daisy, and Tom. The ensuing situation becomes even more delicate and reaching a breaking point when Daisy and Gatsby start to express their illicit affair more openly to the other persons choosing not to hide anymore. Now that more people are aware of what is happening between the two individuals with Daisy popping into Gatsby home in several occasions, Gatsby decides to sack a good number of his servants to prevent them from gossiping about what is going on and causing further jitters about the relationship. However, despite the Gatsby and Daisy trying to stay “discrete” in their relationship, they seem not just to have enough strength to hide it anymore, and this is openly shown at a luncheon held at the Buchanan’s home. During this encounter, the two, Gatsby and Daisy openly express their love for each other in the midst of all the guest despite this being Daisy’s matrimonial home with her husband, Tom.

The affair of the two is so bold that they even share a kiss when Tom steps outside to make a phone call and proclaim love for each other. Things get even more complicated when Daisy’s daughter walks in to witness the ensuing show of affection between her mother and Gatsby but is quickly whisked away from the after being introduced to the group. Notably, even after Tom comes back from having made the phone call, the two, Gatsby and Daisy seem not to have had enough of each other and can no longer resist each other anymore. They share loving gazes at each other which is quickly noticed by Tom whose suspicion is now confirmed and is more than sure that the two are having an affair behind his back.

Without any signal, Daisy suggests that the group should have a trip to New York of which the husband Tom agrees. However, Tom suggests that he drives Gatsby’s car with Jordan and Nick while Gatsby to drive his car alongside his wife Daisy. Tom gives out this suggestion so that he can have an opportunity to rant out at the seemingly open relationship that his wife is having with Gatsby. During a stop at Wilson’s garage for gas, Wilson who is ill asks when he can purchase Tom’s old car who needs so money so that he can move away having just learned of his wife’s affair. Tom appears to be very horrified at the thought that in a short period, he risks losing both his mistress and the wife.

Upon reaching the city which is overbearingly hot, the party decides to rent a hotel to relax and have some drinks to escape from the scorching heat. Tom, seemingly not able to withstand the thought of seeing his wife’s lover around tries to device ingenious means to try and get Gatsby admit to having an affair with the wife. Gatsby seems to be aware of Tom’s plan and remains calm and composed all through the conversation as Tom tries to catch him in a lie. After a seeing that his tricks are not bearing any fruit, the pressure is too much on Tom who bursts out confronting Gatsby about the ongoing that he is having with the wife. Daisy however stunned by this open allegation by Tom comes out asserting that nothing is going on between her and Gatsby, but Tom hears none of this opting to confront Gatsby. Tom points out that he will by no means allow a “Mr. Nobody” to come by and snatch his wife right in front of his eyes.

Having had enough of the barrage of attacks against him by Tom, Gatsby rises to confront Tom about the reality of Daisy not loving him in the first place. Gatsby tells Tom that Daisy only consented to the marriage because she grew wearing of him taking too long to make money and become rich. Daisy robotically agrees with the assertions that Gatsby was making about her not loving Tom, something which hurts her husband. Tom, now apparently taken aback by the events that are unfolding opts to pressure Daisy to refute her statement that she does not love him which Daisy does and goes on to say that Gatsby asks too much of her. At this point, even Daisy seems not to be comfortable with the situation that Gatsby is putting her through, to deny her husband in his very presence and proclaim a love for him instead.

Tom who has now heard enough of the fiasco that is unfolding before his very eyes lashes out at Gatsby making open the distasteful ways with which he has made his wealth which appears to affect Daisy. Looking like he has accomplished his objective of drawing a wedge between the two new lovebirds especially knowing that this revelation had changed how Daisy now viewed Gatsby he no longer sees Gatsby as a threat to his marriage. Notably, he even goes ahead in a show of defiance telling Gatsby to drive Daisy home.

While driving home after the night characterized by the uneventful happenings Tom comes across a terrible sight of a lady who has been knocked down by a car and immediately concludes that Gatsby is the culprit. Nick is however disgusted by the turn of events especially given that the driver who knocked her down did not stop but drove away leaving her for the dead. Interestingly while leaving the Buchanan’s house, Nick is surprised to find Gatsby hiding in the bushes in the guise of wanting to protect Daisy in the event she was attacked by Tom prompted by the events that had happened that night. This unfolding catches Nick by surprise especially given that he had just left the Buchanan’s peacefully having their dinner. While still conversing, Gatsby admits to Nick that it was indeed Daisy at the driver’s seat when the accident occurred, but he will opt to take the blame on her behalf.


This chapter characterizes one of the turning points in the novel especially given the tension that had been mounting between the relationship between Gatsby and Daisy. After heated confrontation between the duo and Tom, Daisy opts to choose her husband over Gatsby. All the other friends who had tagged along to the hotel witnessed the events as the two men fight for the attention of Daisy. In the long run, it is evident that Gatsby fantasies are shuttered as he seems not to be able to destroy what Tom and Daisy had built during their marriage however shaky it might have appeared especially with the obvious flaws that he had noted.

In the earlier happening before Daisy made her choice for the husband over Gatsby, her young daughter, Pammy, comes into the picture and shatters the romantic experience that she had been having with Gatsby. Gatsby appears to be shocked while looking at the child especially given that Pammy was somehow a representation of the love that Tom shares with Daisy such that denying the love that exists between two is as absurd as denying the very existence of Pammy. Tom asserts this point during their confrontation at the hotel where he tells Gatsby that there are some things that he will never know between him and Daisy. One of the things that Gatsby’s wealth cannot erase is the shared future, which is Pammy that Tom and Daisy share together. Interestingly, Daisy also continually refers to Pammy as “dream” also signifying that she does not share the same dream with Gatsby.

Notably, the confrontation that ensued at the hotel indicates the original intention that Daisy had with her affair with Gatsby. It was apparent that she was using this affair as an avenue to get back at Tom who was also engaging in extra-marital affairs. The plan all along was to get back at her husband for his infidelity which I the long run happens to have borne fruit as Tom is brought to the realization that he might lose his wife. Facing the inevitability of this happening, Tom opts to come out clean admitting his affair consequently affirming that he would mend his ways and take care of his wife better. This depiction comes out quite clearly at the end of the story where despite the events that had happened that night, Daisy is seen to be calmly having supper with the husband despite the fact that she had just run over and killed another woman and had consequently broken another man’s heart.

Conspicuously, as Gatsby narrates the happening of the hit-and-run accident that occurred as they were driving home, it is apparent that Daisy had intentionally mowed down on Myrtle which also was a pointer to understanding Daisy’s mindset as she left the hotel. Now that her illicit affair with Gatsby seems to have come to an end with the events that had transpired at the hotel, it was only fair that even Tom could not also have fun outside of their marriage with his mistress.

At the end of this chapter, it is evident that Nick is appalled by the events that transpired with everyone that he had an encounter with especially with the somewhat self-seeking attitude. The people seem not to have been moved even a little even with the apparent death of another human being who had just been mowed down and left for the dead. It is evident that Gatsby gave up everything that a person could stand for, his past, even his morality in the pursuit of Daisy. He is so engulfed by the quest to be accepted into the elite circle that he has forgotten to think about his moral standing. Conversely, Nick guards his moral belief by refusing to join the Buchanan’s for dinner having no desire to be part of such a circle.

The apparent difference that is present between the Buchanan’s and Gatsby is brought to the front one final time. The Buchanan’s are brought together in their perverse thinking that everyone is disposable, Gatsby and Myrtle, and sit down to calmly have their dinner. On the other hand, Gatsby is still struggling to protect the perfect image that he has of Daisy even willing to sacrifice himself for her abhorrent crime. He seems to have given up everything and now appears to have nothing more to lose.

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