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The Great Gatsby Essay

1616 words - 7 pages

How far do you agree that Fitzgerald has created an affective narrator in Nick Carraway?

In my opinion Nick Carraway is the best narrator possible for The Great Gatsby as he is an active participator. His opinions are not biased and I feel that if another character was narrating we would not know all the information there is to know about them e.g. if Gatsby was narrating we would never find out about his criminal record and his mischief, or if Daisy was narrating we would never find out about her affair and drunken secrets. I am not sure that Nick is completely honest about everything that goes on, and it’s clear we can’t trust him on occasions that he is drunk. I am also unsure whether ...view middle of the document...

It becomes clear in chapter one that Nick and Gatsby are from West Egg whereas Tom and Daisy are from East Egg, this is the clear class divide throughout the novel, and we are unsure whether Nick makes us feel the way we do towards Gatsby because he and Nick are in the same situation, or again whether it is actually genuine.

The way Nick describes Tom, makes me dislike Tom from the very beginning this gives a bad first impression of him, by using phrases such as ‘Two shining arrogant eyes ... gave the appearance he was always leaning aggressively forward’, make us dislike Tom straight away, and feel as though we don’t want to get to know him anymore; whereas he describes Gatsby for the first time as ‘He was standing with his hands in his pockets regarding the silver pepper of the stars.. a romantic readiness about him’ giving me very good first impressions leaving me wanting to know more about Gatsby, but having the mystery around him still there and less about Tom! As the reader gets all their information from Nick we begin to trust him more, we begin to believe what he is telling us. Nick is responsible for our first sight of Gatsby, because the suspense is constantly being built up to meet him it’s important that Nick is there at the point, because it shows that he wants what we want too. For Gatsby’s dream to come true.

Throughout the novel the settings change but Nick stays the narrator throughout, in chapter two (the visit to The Valley Of Ashes) We catch a glimpse of Nick that we haven’t seen before, we begin to realise that he is a bit of a push over and that Tom is using him, ‘taking my elbow, he literally forced me out the car’ to make it look as though he has friends, when really he doesn’t, even though Nick try’s to leave he stays and that way we find out what happens, this is fortunate for the reader but unfortunate for Nick as he is going against what he wants for us to know the real story.

It is extremely important that Nick goes on this trip with Tom because if he didn’t we wouldn’t find out any of the information that we do about Tom and Myrtles affair and George Wilson. Because of this connection I feel that Nick Carraway is an affective narrator, because this chapter is still bringing suspense/mystery about Gatsby but its also giving the reader the gossip about Tom and Daisy.

When we meet Myrtle for the first time we immediately take a dislike to her because Nick has. ‘thickish figure’ and ‘she blocked out the light’ Nick uses this description to show a contrast to Daisy and how perfect she is, as the reader we must remember that this is Nicks point of view, which is easily mixed in with our own. After the meet up the novel moves to Tom and Myrtles secret apartment, Nick wants us to dislike the affair, and describes everything that involves Tom and Myrtle in a disgusting way, he has not one nice thing to say about them. This Is again Fitzgerald showing that, the rich society are nothing, but mean, lazy selfish...

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