This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Consequences Of Nick Carraway As Narrator Of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1441 words - 6 pages

The Importance of Nick Carraway as Narrator of The Great Gatsby

 
In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald critiques the disillusionment of the American Dream by contrasting the corruption of those who adopt a superficial lifestyle with the honesty of Nick Carraway. As Carraway familiarizes himself with the lives of Tom and Daisy Buchanan, Jordan Baker and Jay Gatsby, he realizes the false seductiveness of the New York lifestyle and regains respect for the Midwest he left behind. "Fitzgerald needs an objective narrator to convey and prove this criticism, and uses Carraway not only as the point of view character, but also as a counter example to the immorality and dishonesty Carraway finds in New York" (Bewley 31). Fitzgerald must construct this narrator as reliable. Due to the nature of the novel, the reader would not believe the story if it were told from the perspective of any other character. Fitzgerald cannot expect the reader to believe what the immoral and careless characters have to say, and he spends so much time establishing them as such. Thus, Carraway is deemed narrator and the reader trusts him.

As the practical character in the novel, Carraway is not rash; he is not swayed by the greed and alcohol as some other members of East and West Egg society are. He proclaims, "I have been drunk just twice in my life" (Fitzgerald 33). Fitzgerald constructs Carraway as a follower, not a man of action. He observes Gatsby's parties, never fully experiencing them. He observes the moment before the kiss between the starlet and her director, although Fitzgerald never details the physicality of his relationship with Baker. He observes the affair between Tom Buchanan and Myrtle Wilson, but he never confronts Tom Buchanan, nor does he ever take any steps to attempt to protect Daisy Buchanan. Carraway's passive nature would make him an otherwise weak character, but is ideal for his role as narrator. The reader needs an observer, objective and reliable, to dictate the story, and that is what Fitzgerald delivers in Carraway.

Carraway's honesty is earned through Fitzgerald's characterization of him. Carraway says he is "inclined to reserve all judgements" (Fitzgerald 5). "An objective narrator must possess honesty to be viewed as a reliable source" (Raleigh 101). Also, Carraway establishes his integrity by admitting to the fallacy of his lineage: "The Carraways ... have a tradition that we're descended from the Dukes of Buccleuch, but the actual founder of my line was my grandfather's brother" (Fitzgerald 7). For those families in East Egg who distinguish themselves by their ancestors, acknowledging a lesser line of descent would result in social disaster. Carraway's honesty is highlighted by this contrast of East versus West mentality. Carraway exhibits honesty in the realm of the superficial and pretentious in the choices he makes. He earns a living in the bond business; he does not inherit his money like Buchanan, nor does he steal it like Gatsby....

Find Another Essay On Consequences of Nick Carraway as Narrator of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

Nick Carraway as an Unreliable Narrator in The Great Gatsby

807 words - 4 pages F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby is a story of lost love, mystery, and an exciting tale from the “Roaring Twenties”. While considered a notable piece of literature in American history, perhaps the plot is not all it seems. This is because the narrator, Nick Carraway, is an unreliable one, based on his continuity errors, general racism, biased judgement, contradictory nature, and assumptions of others, all which blind his ability to

The Characters of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

2085 words - 8 pages The Characters of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby        In The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the main characters Tom and Gatsby are both similar and different in their attitudes and their status. Both Tom and Gatsby have attained great wealth and live in very lavish conditions. They differ greatly, on the other hand, in the way that they acquired this wealth, and the way in which they treat other people. Even though

A Critical Review of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1615 words - 6 pages A Critical Review of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is a universal and timeless literary masterpiece. Fitzgerald writes the novel during his time, about his time, and showing the bitter deterioration of his time. A combination of the 1920s high society lifestyle and the desperate attempts to reach its illusionary goals through wealth and power creates the essence behind The Great Gatsby

A Stylistic Study of F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

2375 words - 10 pages Abstract: The Great Gatsby, one of F. Scott Fitzgerald's masterpieces, is viewed as the first step thatAmerican fiction has taken since Henry James. The paper attempts to study and unveil its writing skills and fivemajor elements of this great novel from a stylistic perspective for better understanding and appreciation of itsconsummate artistry.Key words: writing skills; stylistic elements; artistry1. IntroductionF. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940

A Lifestyle of Greed: F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1450 words - 6 pages earned money to raise his social standing and elevate to the economic and social status equivalent of Daisy. F. Scott Fitzgerald disguising himself as Thomas Parke D’Invilliers reveals the major motif of the book, which is the distinction of what is truly real and what only seems to be true, exhibited as James Gatz creates a façade for himself of the elegant and refined Jay Gatsby. Works Cited Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Scribner, 2004. Print.

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby as Criticism of American Society

1787 words - 7 pages the narrator moral commentator of the novel ?. . . ultimately concludes that the conduct of the world of the east falls short of even the minimum standards of behavior . . . The novel dramatizes the reckless profligacy of the Jazz Age? (Gallo 40-43). Works Cited and Consulted Berman, Ronald. "The Great Gatsby" and Fitzgerald's World of Ideas. Tuscaloosa: U of Alabama P, 1997. deKoster, Katie, ed. Readings on F. Scott Fitzgerald. San

Narrator Nick Of The Great Gatsby

396 words - 2 pages Narrator Nick Nick Carraway has a special place in F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel, The Great Gatsby. He is not just one character among several; it is through his eyes and ears that we form our opinions of the other characters. Fitzgerald shows Jay Gatsby's figurative death as a greater tragedy than his physical demise through his depiction of Nick's attitude toward the two events. Gatsby only lives his life to acquire enough wealth to impress

In The Great Gatsby, Nick Carraway as the Foil, Protagonist, and Narrator

629 words - 3 pages In The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, Nick Carraway functions as both the foil and protagonist, as well as the narrator. A young man from Minnesota, Nick travels to the West Egg in New York to learn about the bond business. He lives in the district of Long Island, next door to Jay Gatsby, a wealthy young man known for throwing lavish parties every night. Nick is gradually pulled into the lives of the rich socialites of the East

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1668 words - 7 pages Peter Thewissen Mr. Gilbert English III 19 April 2014 Title In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald discusses many themes of the 1920s, with a specific focus on the rich and idle class, the “old money,” those whose wealth allows them to be careless and destructive without consequences. In the novel, this group of people is characterized by Tom and Daisy- a couple who moves leisurely through life, destroying

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1930 words - 8 pages Raisberys Lima April 17, 2014 HU 330 The Great Gatsby The year is 1929 in the beautiful city of New York. Nick Carraway, the main character, is seen in what appears to be in a therapeutic office with his doctor, who suggest for Carraway to write about what has been the cause of his depression and alcoholism; persuaded Carraway backtracks to a few years back and begins to write what started it all. Seven years back, 1922 to be specific, it’s

F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1836 words - 8 pages F. Scott Fitzgerald uses The Great Gatsby in order to display the wretchedness of upper-class society in the United States. The time period, the 1920s, was an age of new opulence and wealth for many Americans. As there is an abundance of wealth today, there are many parallels between the behavior of the wealthy in the novel and the behavior of today’s rich. Fitzgerald displays the moral emptiness and lack of personal ethics and responsibility

Similar Essays

Nick Carraway As Narrator Of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby

1108 words - 4 pages The Role of Nick Carraway as Narrator of The Great Gatsby     In The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald presents a specific portrait of American society during the roaring twenties and tells the story of a man who rises from the gutter to great riches. This man, Jay Gatsby, does not realize that his new wealth cannot give him the privileges of class and status. Nick Carraway who is from a prominent mid-western family tells the story. Nick

Importance Of Nick Carraway, Narrator Of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby

1134 words - 5 pages Importance of Nick Carraway, Narrator of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby    In The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, the narrator, Nick Carraway, tells a story in which Jay Gatsby tries to attain happiness through wealth.  Even though the novel is titled after Gatsby, Nick analyzes the actions of others and presents the story so that the reader can comprehend the theme. Throughout the novel, Nick is the

How And Why Does F. Scott Fitzgerald Use Nick Carraway As His Narrator Of "The Great Gatsby"?

1954 words - 8 pages , our opinions are based on his. Carraway is a man who observes; this helps us see the story in as much detail as needed, without any important sections forgotten about. And perhaps, Fitzgerald is trying to make sense of his own life, which is similar to that of Gatsby, and uses an outside perspective, that of Nick Carraway, to analyse and foresee what is to come for himself."The Great Gatsby" - F. Scott Fitzgerald (Penguin Classics)

Nick Carraway As Honest Liar In Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby

1323 words - 5 pages Nick Carraway as Honest Liar in Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby        "Everyone suspects himself of at least one of the cardinal virtues, and this is mine: I am one of the few honest people that I have ever known" (Fitzgerald Gatsby 64). So writes Nick Carraway in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby, characterizing himself in opposition to the great masses of humanity as a perfectly honest man. The honesty that Nick attributes to himself