The society portrayed in Gatsby and Tender is one in which the bonds of family and community seem ineffectual or oppressive and in which the chief social mode in which people meet and try to relate to one another is the party. In both novels, parties both large and small provide stages on which to portray the tensions, desires and concealments of a society in fl ux. The first extract we shall examine is from Nick’s account in chapter 1 of Gatsby of Nick’s first visit to a small dinner party held by his second cousin, Daisy, and her husband Tom Buchanan, at their large East Egg home. A young female golf champion, Jordan Baker, is also present and, through the medium of the telephone, a fifth guest intrudes.
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