The Great Gatsby


Unit Syllabus


Part 1 – Internet Treasure Hunt

The treasure hunt is to inform you of the background information required to understand the historical elements of the novel. This assignment is worth 30 points.

Answer the 14 questions by visiting the links. This treasure hunt was authored by Valerie Arbizu, with some alterations and updated links.

Treasure Hunt Questions

1. F. Scott Fitzgerald: List several items that greatly influenced the life and writing of F. Scott Fitzgerald.

2. World War I: After the war ended, the economy skyrocketed, making it possible for people to spend more time and money on leisure activities…

(a) List the dominant postwar American attitudes
(b) Who was elected President of the United States after WWI?
(c) List two major technological innovations that came out of the WWI experience.

3. Constitutional Amendments: Briefly explain what the 18th Amendment & 19th Amendment provide.

4. Prohibition: What are the three major legislative elements of Prohibition? What were the final results of prohibition?

5. Speakeasies: What is a Speakeasy? Based on information you have already collected from previous questions, why do you think Speakeasies popped up across the country?

6. Organized Crime: Who is Arnold Rothstein? What is his primary occupation? What are his 'side-jobs?' What is his connection to "The Great Gatsby?"

7. Read the first five paragraphs about "Flapper Jane". According to the author, what are the essential elements of being a true flapper? Look at the images of Louise Brooks. Does she fit the flapper profile? Why or why not?  Read Dorothy Parker’s poem "The Flapper". Do you think Ms. Parker approves or disapproves of flappers? Explain.

8. Automobiles: Why were cars considered "the most important catalyst for social change in the 1920's?

9. Language: List 5 slang words or phrases and definitions from this site and write them down in your notes. Why did you choose these terms?

10. Drawing Conclusions: Based on the information you have collected from this website, what do you think the plot and setting of The Great Gatsby will include? What kinds of characters do you expect to encounter in the novel?

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