At some points throughout the novel Daisy is objectified or otherwise synonymized with money (such as when her voice was described to be full of money). This, coupled with Gatsby's clear ambition from childhood, could lead one to conclude that Gatsby wanted Daisy because of what she represented, wealth and status.

On the other hand, Gatsby seems to repeatedly state that his motivation for earning money was solely to win over Daisy. When Daisy rejects him all his money seems to immediately mean nothing to him.

Can both of these viewpoints be reconciled? Am I missing some other element in the book?

  • Are you certain that Daisy's voice was described as full of money instead of full of honey? Feb 26, 2023 at 19:29
  • 2
    @M.A.Golding “She’s got an indiscreet voice,” I remarked. “It’s full of ——” I hesitated. “Her voice is full of money,” he said suddenly. That was it. I’d never understood before. It was full of money — that was the inexhaustible charm that rose and fell in it, the jingle of it, the cymbals’ song of it… . high in a white palace the king’s daughter, the golden girl"
    – iceninja21
    Feb 27, 2023 at 4:22

1 Answer 1


That quote in its longer form perhaps is the key

She’s got an indiscreet voice I remarked, its full of, I hesitated. It's full of money he said suddenly. That was it. I'd never understood it before. It was full of money-that was the inexhaustible charm that rose and fell in it, the jingle of it, the cymbals' song of it... High in a white palace the king's daughter, the golden girl.

At the same time, he envisions her as materialistically wealthy, and as a golden princess in a white palace. This implies a certain confusion of concepts: he wants wealth and the high life, and he wants a fairy tale with Daisy, and he does not draw the distinction between them. Perhaps no woman on earth could have lived up to his dream, but certainly Daisy can not, and he's let her wealth blind him to that.

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