30th May 2017

Gatsby Character

Three key characters in this novel are Nick, Daisy and Jay Gatsby.

Nick Carraway is the main character and the narrator of the novel the Great Gatsby. When Nick was younger his Father once said ‘ “Whenever you feel like criticising any one… just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.” ‘ By Nicks father telling him this it helped Nick to see the truth in in peoples actions. He is a good person to tell Gatsby’s story because he tells the truth however he then says further down the fist page that their is only a limit to where one will not judge and that it is only human nature to judge, he later goes on to say ‘’I am one of the few honest people that i have ever known.’ Once again trying to show that he is in being truthful and trying to view the situation form all sides of the story but also saying that everyone around him are not honest and not trustworthy. The first time Nick saw Jay Gatsby was when Gatsby was standing on his dock reaching out towards a green light across the sea ward at that moment nick had become very curious of who this Gatsby was. When he meet Gatsby what he noticed most importantly was his smile, ’He smiled understandingly- much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with the quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in a life.’ By Nick describing his smile saying that it has ‘the quality of external reassurance’ tells use that it can make anyone feel good about themselves it also gives a good explaination of what his personality is like how he is rare and unique, but Nick only talks about his smile and never his eyes. Eyes in this novel are the door into your soul and by Nick only noticing his rare smile he was drawn into that world and he over looked all the bad that came with it and only focused on the positives. “They’re a rotten crowd… ‘You’re worth the whole damn bunch put together.” this was the only compliment Nick had ever said to Gatsby, the rotten crowd is referring to the action of Tom, Daisy and Jordan and how the showed no emotion towards the death of Myrtle. When he said that to Gatsby it tells us that he is now fully on Gatsby’s side that he would do anything to keep the name Gatsby great.  By nick becoming apart of that world he found himself keeping secrets and helping people have affairs, it is towards the end when he realises what it was doing to him. ‘After Gatsby’s death the East was haunted for me… I decided to come back home.’ he realised that he could not go on living in world all about money so he decided to leave and go back home.

Look at your above work and consider how this is Nick making a judgement. Do you think that he is really not biased? How does his “judgemental nature” develop throughout the novel?

Jay Gatsby is one of the main characters within this novel. He is a young, wealthy, (new money) businessman  who living at his home in West Egg out on Long Island. Gatsby is known for throwing the most extravagant and magnificent parties. At the begging Nick describes Gatsby as this amazing person who is so charming and gracious, by describing his smile as an understanding smile ‘He smiled understandingly- much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with the quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in a life.’ nick also makes Gatsby come across as a dreamer and a hopeful person in which he is‘He stretched out his arms towards the dark water in a curious way… In voluntary i glanced seaward – and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away…’ Gatsby was reaching out for the green light that is placed at the end of Daisy’s dock. The green light symbolises Gatsby’s hope of him and Daisy getting back together. Daisy and him getting back together is a dream of his that he would to anything for it to come true. Nick describes the green light as minute and far away from Gatsby reach by saying this it implies that there is a very small chance in getting Daisy back. There is one time in the novel where Gatsby starts to think that daisy is out of reach, “ ‘If it wasn’t for the mist we could see your home across the bay… You always have a green light that burns at the end of your dock’ ” In this quote the mist brings back the past and stops Gatsby from showing daisy how close he is to her, but it also represents the past 5 years that they have spent apart. From the mist blocking the green light from being seen it then shatters the illusion of Gatsby having Daisy back. There were many rumours about him such as ‘he had killed a man once… that he was a German spy during the war… was a in the American army during the war.’ Everything that was being said about him was creating and building the illusion that put over him to created his image of The Great Gatsby. However throughout the novel The Great Gatsby illusion slowly begins to shatter. At the beginning he told Nick that he ‘was the some wealthy people in the middle west-all dead now… educated at oxford,’ Everything he was telling nick about how he grew up and how he came to be wealthy all seemed has if he had rehearsed saying it all because it all just flowed out with sentence after another. But by the time Gatsby had become thinking that he may not be able to get Daisy back he then to nick the truth about how ’His parents were shiftless and unsuccessful farm people,’ Jay Gatsby is the perfect representation of the american dream because he comes from being poor and having nothing to being rich and having everything however he doe not truly have everything and is not true happy.

Daisy Buchanan is an upper class wealthy woman, she is married to Tom Buchanan with a daughter called Pammy, they all live  in a house on East egg New York. Daisy is seen as an amazing beautiful woman but getting deeper into the novel you begin to realise how shallow she truly is. When Daisy is first introduced in the novel she is surrounded in white with white curtains flowing in the wind, white couches, white dresses everything around her is white ‘Across the the courtesy bay the white palaces…’ including her house. White is usually known as a colour which represents purity and innocence but in this novel it represents boring and plainness. Daisy had been born into the upper class side of society, so money and fansy things was all she really knew ’she vanished into her rich house, into her rich, full life, leaving Gatsby – nothing.’ this shows that she truly couldn’t careless about Gatsby or any one. When she was younger and had meet Gatsby she didn’t marry him because she didn’t love him but because he didn’t have any money and was not rich. Then meet Tom Buchanan and married him and enjoyed the life of having ‘old money’. Also how daisy talks about her daughter ‘and i hope she’ll be a fool- that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, a beautiful little fool.’ What this is saying is that she believe’s that girls don’t need to be smart all they need to be is beautiful and there life will be fine. By Daisy saying this tells that she doesn’t really care or love her daughter and maybe it extends out passed her daughter with Tom and Jordan as well. Eyes are seen to entrance of your soul so when Nick says Daisy’s eyes are ‘impersonal eyes in the absence of all desire.’ he is saying that he eyes show no emotion and that she has an emptyness on the inside.

Nick helps understand the illusion by

The illusion of Gatsby starts even with name, Jay Gatsby when in fact his name is James Gatz. He was a poorboy from  was that he was the charismatic wealthy new money man but really he was a poor man who illegally made his money. The way in which Gatsby told nick about his past was told as if he had rehearsed what he was going to say, ‘My incredulity was submerged in fascination now; it was like skimming hastily through a dozen magazines.’ While explaining his passed he backed up everything he was saying with proof. Throughout the novel his illusion of having everything and having a happy life and almost the girl of his dreams begins to shatter.

Daisy helps the illusion because she is shown as a young beautiful women who life is simply perfect but in reality when you really look into her eyes there is an ‘absence of all desire.’ Leaving her unable to really feel anything meaningful. Daisy is very materialistic and this is part of the reason why she married Tom for his wealth and the status he would give her. Daisy goes on to say ’I’m glad it’s a girl, And i hope she’ll be a fool- that’s the best thing a girl can be in this world, beautiful little fool.’ It is shown that Daisy thinks its much more important to be beautiful and irresponsible than to be worried about what truly matters in life. 

-Describe three important relationships in the text and explain what they revealed about the illusion.

Nick & Gatsby

Daisy & Gatsby

Tom and Daisy are an important relationship within the illusion because they show the wealthy side of life. but what they also show is how money doesn’t actually make you happy and how cruel and self that it can make you ’she vanished into her rich house, into her rich, full life, leaving Gatsby – nothing.’ Money made them stop feeling feelings.



Join the conversation! 2 Comments

  1. Georgia, it is clear you have understood the connection between Gatsby and the green light. I want to see you:
    – Be logical with your analysis. Use the structure (SEXY) from the board in todays lesson to explain your ideas.
    – Re-read your work out loud. This might help you to recognise sentences and phrases that are a little “clunky” and need to be re-worked.

  2. I want you to think about your comment that “Gatsby is the American Dream”. Why could someone argue that he is not? What is it about how he achieves the dream and what is lacking from this “dream” that could support a counter argument?


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