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The Influence Of Setting On A Story.

2354 words - 10 pages

An author’s usage of the element of setting can assist the readers in tying the story together and better appreciating of the thoughts and significant ideas mentioned in it. The setting of a story is used to convey key information of the time era, the type of society as well as the state of the characters in which the narrative takes place. F. Scott Fitzgerald’s novel The Great Gatsby being one of the most criticized, analyzed, quoted and interpreted piece of writing since the time it was published. The author would not have been able to drive interest in his writing without the prominent setting. He uses the setting to create powerful perceptions and transmit ideas in order to build that interest. Similarly in Garen Thomas’s biography of President Barack Obama, Yes We Can the author utilizes the setting of the late 20th Century and early 21st Century in the United States of America which contributes towards the making of the 44th President - Barack Obama. It shows the hardships and the struggle to prove his identity as an African American under various societal, familial as well as political influences. It portrays how his sheer optimism, enthusiastic determination and his utmost belief that “change can happen” (Barack Obama) intensifies the true essence of setting within this piece of literature. It glorifies the fact that freedom includes opportunity for prosperity and success, and also that upward social mobility is greatly achieved through hard work and perseverance.
In The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald focuses greatly on the character of Jay Gatsby, as a narrative through the words of Nick Carraway. He expresses the character of Gatsby as an extremely wealthy individual and the origin of his wealth being quite suspicious. He did not gather all this wealth just to become rich himself, but to show off this wealth to someone and use it as a magnet to attract. He attempts to be free of his old Western background and to re-establish his life with Daisy, the girl he fell in love with as a young man. He wanted her to become free from her marriage with Tom Buchanan so that they could go, “back to Louisville and be married from her house-just as if were five years ago” (Pg. 106). This love was the key force which drives Gatsby in the hollow pursuit of happiness and wealth, ultimately leading to a massive tragedy. The setting as a whole enhances the effect of the so called “achievements” in Gatsby’s life. Nick Carraway being the narrator, describes his neighbour Jay Gatsby’s mansion as “ a factual imitation of some Hotel de Ville in Normandy, with a tower on one side, spanking new under a thin beard of raw ivy, and a marble swimming pool, and more than forty acres of lawn and garden” (Pg.11), overshadowing the small little house he had rented. This description of the mansion assists in the character development of Gatsby, as a man who likes to show off his wealth and is not afraid of any kind of expenses. If he demands perfection in something he will do...

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