SAT / ACT Prep Online Guides and Tips

Best Abigail Williams Analysis - The Crucible

Posted by Laura Staffaroni | Jan 28, 2020 9:57:00 AM

Book Guides

In Arthur Miller's The Crucible, Abigail Williams is the pebble that gets the avalanche of the Salem witch trials started. It is Abigail who first says Tituba has been using supernatural powers to corrupt her and Betty, and it is Abigail who jumps on the (metaphorical) accusation train after Tituba has been coerced into confessing her involvement and naming co-conspirators.

In this guide, we'll go over Abigail's entire sphere of influence, from her role as the lead accuser in the witch trials to the relationship between Abigail and John Proctor, and discuss what drives Abigail to act as she does throughout the course of the play.

Read More

 

Best Crucible Act 4 Summary

Posted by Samantha Lindsay | Jan 21, 2020 10:56:00 AM

Book Guides

Act 4 gives us the exciting conclusion to this saga of madness. How are the citizens of Salem and their governing officials dealing with the fallout from the trials? Will the "witches" falsely confess to avoid execution? Does John Proctor still, like, totally hate himself? Read on to find out all this and more, including key quotes and a thematic analysis for the final act of The Crucible.

Read More

 

Most Important Quotes From The Crucible, Analyzed

Posted by Laura Staffaroni | Jan 14, 2020 5:00:00 PM

Book Guides

The Crucible is four acts of tight dialogue and economical action. It can be hard to pick out particular moments or quotes as being key since everything moves along so quickly. Never fear! I have your back with this complete guide to The Crucible quotes.

I'll go over the most important quotes from The Crucible, explaining both their literal meaning and why they're important. For clarity, the quotes are grouped into four themes: irony, fear and hysteria, pride and reputation, and power and authority. Each section also includes additional quotes that fall under the same general theme for you to practice analyzing on your own.

Read More

 

Best Character Analysis: Myrtle Wilson - The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 4:00:00 PM

Book Guides

In most books and movies, the "other woman"—the woman having an affair with a married man—is often painted as a villain. But what about in The Great Gatsby, a novel in which both married women (Myrtle Wilson and Daisy Buchanan) are having affairs? Especially given that one (Daisy) ends up killing the other (Myrtle), is Myrtle just a one-note "other woman," or is there more to her?

Myrtle's role in the story isn't as large as Daisy's, Gatsby's, or Tom's. However, she is crucial to the plot of the story, and especially to its tragic conclusion. Find out more about Myrtle's role in Gatsby in this guide!

Read More

 

Best Analysis: Eyes of TJ Eckleburg in The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 4:00:00 PM

Book Guides

In The Great Gatsby, in the middle of a strange, gray landscape, hovers a giant billboard of eyes without a face—the eyes of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg. It's a creepy image, and the fact that several characters seem disturbed by it means that it is very significant in the novel. But did you know that F. Scott Fitzgerald didn't make up this advertisement? If you image search "oculist shop sign," you'll see that this disembodied eyes thing was a pretty standard way to advertise places that sold glasses!

So how does The Great Gatsby transform what would have a reasonable everyday image into a sign of the macabre? And why does this billboard affect the characters who see them so much? In this article, I'll talk about the places where the eyes of Dr. T.J. Eckleburg are mentioned in the novel, explain their symbolic meaning, connect them with the novel's themes and characters, and also give you some jumping-off points for writing essays.

Read More

 

Best Character Analysis: Nick Carraway – The Great Gatsby

Posted by Halle Edwards | Jan 13, 2020 4:00:00 PM

Book Guides

Nick Carraway is The Great Gatsby's narrator, but he isn't the protagonist (main character).

This makes Nick himself somewhat tricky to observe, since we see the whole novel through his eyes. How can you watch the narrator? This difficulty is compounded by the fact that Nick is an unreliable narrator—basically, a narrator who doesn't always tell us the truth about what's happening.

In this post we will explore what we objectively know about Nick, what he does in the novel, his famous lines, common essay topics/discussion topics about Nick, and finally some FAQs about Mr. Carraway.

Read More

 

Best Analysis: Love and Relationships in The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Book Guides

Love, desire, and sex are a major motivators for nearly every character in The Great Gatsby. However, none of Gatsby's five major relationships is depicted as healthy or stable.

So what can we make of this? Is Fitzgerald arguing that love itself is unstable, or is it just that experiencing love and desire the way the characters do is problematic?

Gatsby's portrayal of love and desire is complex. So we will explore and analyze each of Gatsby's five major relationships: Daisy/Tom, George/Myrtle, Gatsby/Daisy, Tom/Myrtle, and Jordan/Nick. We will also note how each relationship develops through the story, the power dynamics involved, and what each particular relationship seems to say about Fitzgerald's depiction of love.

We will also include analysis of important quotes for each of the five major couples. Finally, we will go over some common essay questions about love, desire, and relationships to help you with class assignments.

Keep reading for the ultimate guide to love in the time of Gatsby!

Read More

 

Best Character Analysis: George Wilson - The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Book Guides

When you think about The Great Gatsby's major characters, George Wilson is often the last to come to mind. Compared to his voluptuous wife, Myrtle, Tom, Daisy, Jordan, and, of course, the titular Gatsby himself, pale-faced, shrinking, passive George can almost escape your memory—and perhaps he entirely would if he didn't turn out to be one of the novel's most crucial characters.

George has the least "page time" of the seven major characters, but is important because of the crucial role he plays in the novel's conclusion. Because of this, we don't know quite as much about George's personality, motivations, or characteristics as we do about other characters.

This guide goes over what we do know about George and explains why he is so important. Read on to learn more about the man underneath the ash.

Read More

 

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 1

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Book Guides

In The Great Gatsby, Chapter 1, the table is set, both figuratively and literally. Figurative table setting includes meeting our narrator, Nick Carraway, and getting a sense of the wealthy Long Island neighborhood where the novel will take place. Literal table setting—well, that’s the dinner Nick has with his cousin Daisy, her husband Tom, and their friend (and Nick’s eventual love interest) Jordan Baker.

Keep reading to learn more about what happens in this chapter, understand how it touches on the novel’s main themes, and see close readings of key quotations!

Read More

 

Best Analysis: Green Light in The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 3:00:00 PM

Book Guides

One of the most arresting images in The Great Gatsby is Nick's vision of Gatsby stretching his arms out towards a small green light on the opposite shore of the bay. The mysterious, almost mystical nature of this gesture is a sure-fire sign that this green light is a symbol.

What is a symbol? It's something that is given extra meaning beyond itself. Something that stops being simply an everyday object, and instead represents thoughts and ideas that are bigger than itself.

What are the abstract ideas behind the green light in The Great Gatsby? Read on to see where this symbol pops up in the novel, what themes it is connected to, which characters are most closely associated with it, and some ideas for essay topics on this symbol.

Read More

 

Best Character Analysis: Jordan Baker - The Great Gatsby

Posted by Halle Edwards | Jan 13, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Book Guides

You know that friend of yours who loves to gossip yet always downplays any drama they get into themselves? Jordan Baker in The Great Gatsby is like that friend. A close friend of Daisy Buchanan's, Jordan dates Nick Carraway during the novel and plays a crucial role in reuniting Daisy with the titular Jay Gatsby.

A couple of years younger than Daisy, Jordan is single and a professional golfer, which sets her apart from her married friend. In fact, Jordan is Daisy's opposite in many ways, as we will explore in this guide! Read in for a complete guide to Jordan's appearance, plot points, major quotes, and character analysis!

Read More

 

Best Analysis: Money and Materialism in The Great Gatsby

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 2:00:00 PM

Book Guides

In The Great Gatsby, money is a huge motivator in the characters' relationships, motivations, and outcomes. Most of the characters reveal themselves to be highly materialistic, their motivations driven by their desire for money and things: Daisy marries and stays with Tom because of the lifestyle he can provide her, Myrtle has her affair with Tom due to the privileged world it grants her access to, and Gatsby even lusts after Daisy as if she is a prize to be won. After all, her voice is "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. . . ." (7.106).

So how exactly does materialism reveal itself as a theme, how can it help us analyze the characters, and what are some common assignments surrounding this theme? We will dig into all things money here in this guide.

Read More

 

Best Character Analysis: Tom Buchanan - The Great Gatsby

Posted by Halle Edwards | Jan 13, 2020 1:00:00 PM

Book Guides

Tom Buchanan—hulking, hyper-masculine, aggressive, and super-rich—is The Great Gatsby's chief representative of old money, and (in a book with many unlikeable people) one of the book's least sympathetic characters. He is Gatsby's rival for Daisy's love, but he is also caught up in an affair with Myrtle Wilson that proves fatal for many involved.

So what's important to understand about Tom? What are his motivations? Is there anything sympathetic about him at all? Find out here!

Read More

 

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 7

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 11:01:00 AM

Book Guides

Chapter 7 marks the climax of The Great Gatsby. Twice as long as every other chapter, it first ratchets up the tension of the Gatsby-Daisy-Tom triangle to a breaking point in a claustrophobic scene at the Plaza Hotel, and then ends with the grizzly gut punch of Myrtle’s death.

Read our full summary of The Great Gatsby Chapter 7 to see how all dreams die, only to be replaced with a grim and cynical reality.

Read More

 

Best Summary and Analysis: The Great Gatsby, Chapter 3

Posted by Dr. Anna Wulick | Jan 13, 2020 11:00:00 AM

Book Guides

In Chapter 3 of The Great Gatsby, we finally—finally!—we get to see one of Gatsby's totally off the hook parties! And, it more than lives up to the hype as far as Nick is concerned. Even more excitingly, we finally get to meet the man, the myth, the legend himself—Gatsby, in the flesh! So why then does this reveal, which the novel has been building toward for 2.5 chapters, seem so anticlimactic?

Read on for our Great Gatsby Chapter 3 summary, covering the highs and lows of the Gatsby Saturday night experience.

Read More

 

Ask a Question Below

Have any questions about this article or other topics? Ask below and we'll reply!