Fitzgerald's Use Of Diction In The Great Gatsby

705 words - 3 pages

The Great Gatsby- Diction and Selection of Detail

The Great Gatsby, written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, uses a specific choice of words along with selection of detail to develop the characters of Tom Buchanan and Myrtle Wilson. This essay will cite specific examples that correspond to Fitzgerald's use of diction and details.

Although this passage does not emphasize on Tom Buchanan, his character is developed through the use of literary techniques. Tom's character speaks three times during the course of this scene, and all three times his words make him sound as if he is superior to everyone. " 'It's a bitch,' said Tom decisively. 'Here's your money. Go and buy ten more dogs with it.' "(Page 28) In this quote, diction and a specific choice of words is apparent through the use of the word 'decisively.' Using this word creates the feeling that Tom is authoritative and commanding. This citation also serves as an example of Tom's mannerisms throughout the novel. He speaks to an elderly person with contempt by telling him that he is wrong and that he should buy ten more dogs with the money he gives him. A parallel can also be drawn between Myrtle and the dog in that he looks at the dog in the same degree of importance as Myrtle. Tom's lack of patience can also be seen in his retort to the old man's answer. Another citation, which serves to magnify Tom's superiority over others in the novel, is when Nick tries to leave Tom and Myrtle. "No you don't," Tom interposed quickly. "Myrtle'll be hurt if you don't come up to the apartment. Won't you, Myrtle?" (Page 28) Yet again, this citation serves to demonstrate Tom's commanding personality. More specifically, he answers for Myrtle as if she couldn't have answered herself.

As a result of Fitzgerald's effectual use of diction and word choice, the passage is able to effectively develop Tom's character. Tom's domineering and forceful persona is further enhanced in this passage through the...

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