Unfortunately, as our knowledge of others’ deepens, we often move from enchantment to
Baker traces a painfully familiar, all-to-human arc.
Nick’s initial interest in Jordan is mainly for her looks and charm. Upon first sight
body “extended full length” on the divan, her fluttering lips, and her quaintly tipped chin.
flutter of slender muscles in her arms.” He is willing to overlook her gossipy chatter
about Tom’s extra-marital affair, and is instead beguiled by her dry witticisms and her
begins her matchmaking of Nick and Jordan, we sense that she is only leading where
Nick’s interest is already taking him.
It is Jordan, then, who makes Nick feel comfortable at Gatsby’s party, as we sense
house-party, Nick notes her dishonesty but forgives it, attributing it to her understandable
need to get by in a man’s world. She praises his lack of carelessness, tells him directly “I
like you”–and he is smitten, After Jordan tells him the tale of Gatsby and Daisy’s past,
But the attraction can’t last and is, by summer’s end, replaced by repugnance. The
smallest of details, at first, heralds this falling-apart: “Jordan’s fingers, powdered with
hint that their liaison is to be the matter of only a moment, and that Jordan’s “integrity”
falling-apart–among Tom, Daisy, and Gatsby–that most rankles Nick, and he reacts with
disgust when she invites him in for a nightcap amid all the emotional wreckage, then
complains the next day of his refusal. But Jordan’s worst action, in Nick’s eyes, is her
failure to stay on at Daisy and Tom’s when Daisy needs her. The betrayal is far worse
Nick sees that, while Jordan may excite his interest and passion, the excitement pales in
the light of her lack of “the fundamental decencies.” Though it has been Nick’s first
impulse to reserve judgments about her, in the end he cannot: the limit of his tolerance