Jay Gatsby is certainly great in the eyes of Nick, but there are also traces of suspicion in Gatsby’s work. Nick, the narrator, thinks that Gatsby was “all right”, but some of his actions rose some questions in Nicks mind (2). Many phone calls made Nick think that he got his money dishonestly. Some of the facts that Gatsby said about himself contradicted each other. Most of what Nick thought about Gatsby was that he was a good man and was indeed ‘great’, but he could not dismiss the fact that there were a lot of reasons for suspicion. Throughout Nick’s narration he makes the point that Gatsby was “worth the whole damn bunch” of them and was very great (154). The first description of Gatsby stated that “there was something gorgeous about him” (2). A lot of his characterization is comparing him to “a rotten crowd”, which could be taken to mean all the rich. Nick’s comparisons all say that Gatsby is the best rich person out there, better than all of them “put together” (154). Some reasons why Gatsby is the best include the free parties he throws, and the fact that he rose up ‘from rags to riches’. All of the parties that he threw were open to anyone, they “were not invited, they went there” (41). At these parties, no one knew what Gatsby looked like or even if he existed, but they were there anyway. Because no one saw him he would not be drinking, he would not be dancing, and would not be going crazy, like the rest of the ‘guests’. Later in the novel Nick learns more about Gatsby and how he was born into a poor family and gained riches through hard work. In the war he received many metals and then later went to oxford. These facts made Nick respect Gatsby. Although Nick is unsure about how Gatsby got most of his riches. Nick qu... ... middle of paper ... ...lf “one of the most honest people I[he] have[has] ever known”, being honest of course (59). Although this over honesty could make him a bad narrator, he is better than a narrator that lies. Most of the time nick is a reliable narrator who tells the truth, especially when it comes to Gatsby. His thoughts about Gatsby’s character are very just, because he is suspicious about the same things that regular people would be. Also Nick is from a rich family and so he has been around rich people for all of his life. Because of this fact one would think that he is very capable of judging all types of rich people. To be overly honest, as what Nick would say, Gatsby is great and is seen as great in the eyes of Nick, but his suspicions still stand. The reader knows that those suspicions and Nick’s overall ideas are true through the characteristics of Nick and his experiences.
Nick Carroway is not a very judgmental person, in fact, he himself states that he withholds judgment so that he can get the entire story out of the person to whom he is listening. To say that Nick is both approving and disapproving is not suspiring, for Nick rarely looks at things from only one perspective. Nick finds Gatsby to be ignorantly honest, in that Gatsby could not fathom the idea of saying something without really meaning it. He respects Gatsby for his determination to fit in with the East Egg crowd, though Gatsby does not realize that he does not really fit in with them. On the other hand, Nick sees Gatsby to be excessively flashy and, in the words of Holden Caulfield, 'phony.' Gatsby's whole life is a lie from the moment he left behind the name James Gatz and became Jay Gatsby. Gatsby lies about his past to try to have people perceive him as an 'old money' guy when that really is not necessary. Gatsby's valiant efforts to lure Daisy are respectable, yet they show Gatsby's failure to accept reality and give up on his long lost dream.
“The Great Gatsby” by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a book about a young rich man that had a mysterious past. The author intentionally chose Nick as the narrator of this story. He is Gatsby’s neighbor, and he often contradicts himself. He said he was taught by his father to not criticize people, but he often criticized people including Gatsby. Critics in real life often behave like Nick and are hypocritical.
Presuming that the narration in The Great Gatsby is valid is naïve. Nick uses positive connotation to describe Gatsby and has a negative attitude towards nearly every other character in the novel. Nick describes Gatsby using positive adjectives; even before Gatsby’s character is established, Nick describes Gatsby as, “gorgeous” (Fitzgerald 2), further typifying Nick’s non-objectivity towards Gatsby. “Yet the limitations of Nick’s character do have narrative consequences, for Nick sometimes sees only part of the meaning hat a scene carries… sometimes even strains ‘judgments’ out of inconclusive evidence” (Cartwright). While these subtle adjectives go unnoticed by the reader, they give a subconscious outlook; before the reader has a chance to form an opinion of the characters, Nick uses adjectives and tones to
As the narrator of the novel, every event and piece of knowledge presented in the The Great Gatsby is filtered through Nick, although he credits himself as “one of the few honest people that I have ever known” the reader can deduce his inclination to lie, since his hypocritical comment that in spite of his “[inclination] to reserve all judgements” he has become “the victim of not a few veteran bores” (Fitzgerald 59, 1). Nick desires to be part of the upper class shown through his move to West Egg and his values held in luxury over truth causing him to highly regard tactfully convincing liars and mock amateurs. He admires a woman whose bold lies show a “surprising amount of character”, yet claims “dishonesty in a woman is a thing you never blame deeply” (Fitzgerald 163, 58). On the other hand, Gatsby’s vibrant, “threadbare” yarns are worthy of mocking along with his supposed ruby collection and overly excited display of his Oxford photograph to prove he went there. While Nick is quick to point out deceit in the ways of others, he is oblivious to his own bias, hypocrisy, and lies, creating a delusion of self-righteousness. After starting to go out with Jordan, he reveals a “vague understanding” with a girl back in Minnesota, Nick’s home, that should be
Ultimately, Nick is an unreliable narrator who overlooks Gatsby’s lies because of his biased judgment of him. Nick portrays Gatsby as a generous and charismatic figure while in reality, he is a duplicative and obsessed man entangled in illegal business who is determined on an unattainable goal. It is highly ironic that Nick judges others for their lack of morality and honesty; his own character is plagued by lies as he abets Gatsby in many of his schemes.
Gatsby yearns to be part of the high society, but, in reality, he is an outsider to his social class. An important note for this is that he is a very wealthy person and has an expensive mansion, yet he lives on East Egg, while the “real” high society people live on West Egg. Near the end of the novel, Nick showed the reader that he was one of Gatsby’s only real friends; it showed when Nick was one of the only three people that attended his funeral. Nick seems to be more or less the only one who cares about him after his death.
One of the traits of Gatsby that makes him truly great is his remarkable capacity for hope. He has faith that what he desires will come to him if he works hard enough. He does not comprehend the cruelty and danger that is the rest of the world. Gatsby, while a man of questionable morals, is as wide-eyed and innocent as a small child in his views of the world. These ideals are evident in Nick’s narration and in the words spoken by the other characters, including Gatsby himself.
He believed Gatsby was just trying to impress him, by telling him what could be a fairytale. As the narrator, Nick is suppose to withhold judgement, but now he is becoming more of a character. At the beginning of the novel, Nick described others by their attributes; he had no opinion of them. However, Nick now has people he clearly likes and dislikes, and people he trusts, and others he does not. This is a sharp comparison to what a narrator is suppose to be. We can relate to Nick in this way because over time, we begin to judge people for their personalities, rather than their outer appearance. This can be related to how Nick felt about Gatsby in chapter three, compared to now. Nick no longer needs approval from Gatsby, but rather Gatsby needing approval from him.
The novel, The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald relates the story of the mysterious Jay Gatsby through the eyes of an idealistic man that moves in next door to the eccentric millionaire. Nick Carraway comes to the east coast with dreams of wealth, high society, and success on his mind. It is not long before Gatsby becomes one of his closest friends who offers him the very lifestyle and status that Nick came looking for. As the story unfolds, it is easy to see that the focus on Jay Gatsby creates a false sense of what the story truly is. The Great Gatsby is not the tragic tale of James Gatz (Jay Gatsby), but rather the coming of age story of Nick Carraway. In many ways the journeys of Gatsby and Nick are parallel to one another, but in the end it’s Nick’s initiation into the real world that wins out.
Indeed one of the unique features of this novel is the mystery surrounding it’s main character ‘Gatsby-the man who gives his name to this book’ This sense of inscrutability which is omnipresent with Gatsby is cleverly achieved through the narrative techniques which Fitzgerald employs. The most obvious, and also most effective of which is the narration from Nick’s perspective. Throughout this novel it is Nick’s views of Gatsby which we read, not Fitzgerald’s and not anyone else’s. Only Nick’s. And even Nick seems to be some what in the dark as to Gatsby’s character, he often switches tact throughout the novel on his impression of Gatsby. This seems to insinuate that he has been ponderous over Gatsby for some time. The reader gains the impression that Nick has made calculating decisions throughout the novel, in terms of what he allows us to know about Gatsby. He is after all writing in retrospect. The very fact that Nick still has an ambiguous attitude towards Gatsby even after his death, endorses the readers opinion of Gatsby as a character who can not be categorised. He is uniqu...
Nick Carraway is the only character worth knowing in The Great Gatsby. He is living in East Egg with the rich and powerful people. He is on the guest lists to all of their parties and yet he is the person most worthy of attending such parties because he is well bread and his family is certainly not poor. “Whenever you feel like criticizing anyone, just remember that all people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.” (Ch1, P1). These words were taught to Nick by his father showing the qualities that a man with goals and values would have in a place where goals and values was no existent. His Judgmental eye for character and guts of using them when desired makes him more interesting. He has a greatest fear that he will be all alone by himself.
At the beginning of the book Nick sees Gatsby as a mysterious shady man. In the beginning of the chapter Nick somewhat resents Gatsby. In Nick’s opinion Gatsby was the representation of “…everything for which I have unaffected scorn.” (Fitzgerald 2). Nick sees Gatsby as what he hates the most in life, rich folk. Since the start of the novel it was obvious that had “Disapproved of him from beginning to end.” (Fitzgerald 154). As time passes, Nick realizes his neighbor has quite a mysterious past. Some think he’s a bootlegger, and a different person wa...
No one can be perfect in everything; it is good to make mistakes as long as we learn from them. Jay Gatsby was a man of secrets; he leaves an insightful mark on every person he talks to. Gatsby’s neighbor, Nick, says “it is what preyed on Gatsby, what foul dust floated in the wake of his dreams that temporarily closed out my interest in the abortive sorrows and short-winded elations of men.”(Fitzgerald 6-7). Nick was simply appalled by Gatsby and wanted to know about him and any secrets he may have, Nick felt Gatsby was a great man of mystery and was extremely interesting. Gatsby told Nick “I don’t want you to get a wrong idea of me from all these stories you hear” (69), then opened himself up to Nick and told him “My family all died and I came into
Nick wants the readers to believe that the way he was raised gives him the right to pass judgement on a immoral world. He says, that as a consequence of the way he was raised he is "inclined to reserve all judgements" about other people (page 5). His saying this makes it seem like we can trust him to give a fair unbiased account of the story that he is telling, but we later learn that he does not reserve all judgements. Nick further makes us feel that he is a non-partisan narrator by the way he tells of his past. We come to see that Nick is very partial in his way of telling the story. This is shown when he admits early in the story that he does not judge Gatsby because Gatsby had a "extraordinary gift for hope, a romanric readiness". This made Nick more loyal to Gatsby than other characters in the book.
Ultimately, although readers portray Nick as an honest and unbiased narrator, through the above evidence combined with the fact that the 2 years have passed for Nick, his narration point is inherently bias. Since he has such a close friendship with Gatsby, Nick manages to overlook Gatsby’s illegal activities, and portray him unjustly as a virtuous man. The portrayal is unjust because Nick doesn’t account for his flaws, and he highlights his positives.