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The Great Gatsby

Essay by   •  May 25, 2011  •  Essay  •  475 Words (2 Pages)  •  2,229 Views

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In The Great Gatsby, the readers are finally introduced to the person with all the hype, Jay Gatsby. Until chapter 3, Gatsby was seen at a distance to create suspense and interest about his character for the reader. Since Nick has met Gatsby, he has begun to change and it is shown through his speech, thoughts and actions. Gatsby is also starting to show his true feelings as his desire for Daisy has now surfaced. Nonetheless, Fitzgerald now introduces Gatsby through Nick's eyes.

Nick's development as a character is conflicting in the sense that he is also the narrator and his depiction of the story to the reader changes in bias now that he has met Gatsby. Because of his feelings for Gatsby, his overall development as a character has made me question his sexual orientation. At first, Nick sees himself as "one of the few honest people that I have ever known", but after the first encounter with Gatsby, Nick's personality begins to change. (Fitzgerald, 59) He becomes fonder of his surroundings, describing things as "gorgeous" and "succulent", as oppose to before where he would not release sentiments towards objects. (Fitzgerald, 69) Nick seemed like a very calm character but after he comes across Gatsby, Nick becomes more upbeat as he is intrigued to discover more about Gatsby.

Nick's sudden mood changes may be attributed to his physical attraction for Gatsby. After Nick unknowingly discovers Gatsby while talking to him, Nick feels as if Gatsby gave him a smile that "comes across four or five times in life." (Fitzgerald, 49) Nick then goes on to talk about how that smile made him feel important because it was only directed at him. Nick becomes instantaneously intrigued to find out more about him. To no avail, Gatsby has to leave immediately for a phone call. Later that night when Nick gets his first good look at Gatsby, Nick points out the attractiveness of Gatsby, saying that his "tanned skin was drawn attractively tight on his face and his short hair looked as though it were trimmed every day. I could see nothing sinister about him." (Fitzgerald, 51) By inserting scenarios where Nick becomes fond with Gatsby, Fitzgerald is emphasizing Nick's possible homosexuality.

Even Nick's speech, or lack thereof, is proving possible homosexual thoughts for Gatsby. Normally, a friend says to another friend what they are feeling without thought. Although during conversations between them, Nick is thinking about saying how he's feeling rather than actually saying what he's feeling because he worries Gatsby may find his thoughts discontenting. When Gatsby stumbled about his past stories to Nick, Nick thought about not hurting his feelings, and "with an effort I managed to restrain my incredulous laughter." (Fitzgerald, 64) Therefore, Nick's feelings for Gatsby are now being displayed through his speech and narration of his and Gatsby's

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