Great Gatsby Point of View Analysis

938 WordsJun 8, 20134 Pages
A narrator, by definition, is how an author chooses to portray information to readers in their work. An author’s choice, in how to tell a story is ideal to the effect it has on readers. In F. Scott Fitzgerald’s timeless classic The Great Gatsby, Nick Carraway tells the entire story as a first-person, peripheral narrator. Fitzgerald purposefully chooses Nick as a partially removed character, with very few emotions and personal opinions. By doing so, readers experience the same ambiguity of other character’s thoughts, are carried smoothly throughout the plot, and Nick’s nonjudgmental character lets readers form opinions of their own. To begin with, because Nick is merely another character in the unfolding tragedy readers can never see into…show more content…
Besides ignorance to thought, Nick being a practical, peripheral narrator, provides little to no, personal opinion. Although it could be argued that this is a negative quality for a narrator, Fitzgerald made sure he gives nothing away, nor forces any opinions on the readers. He leaves all final opinions in the hands of readers, which makes the novel such an interesting topic because of the variety of interpretations available. Nick never judges any of the characters for their immoral actions and poses as an innocent, reserved bystander. This leaves final judgment open to opinion, which is why The Great Gatsby can appeal to so many different audiences. At the end of the novel, Fitzgerald includes the statement “one gentleman to whom I telephoned implied that he had got what he deserved” (169) in reference to Gatsby’s death, which leaves readers to choose a side, whether readers should pity Gatsby, or if one has the right to believe that his unlawfulness lead to his own demise. Overall, Fitzgerald obviously put a great amount of thought in choosing Nick Carraway, and innocent, exclusive, yet completely ever-present character as the narrator of the story. Because of Nick’s circumstance and character,
Open Document