Essay on The Great Gatsby By F. Scott Fitzgerald

1670 Words Nov 1st, 2015 7 Pages
Fitzgerald uses a variety of authorial methods and techniques to inform the tragic nature of ‘The Great Gatsby’, and amongst these are the settings and structure of the novel. These both enhance and detract form the tragic nature of the novel. By examining each aspect of the setting and structure, it can be determined how they inform the tragic nature of the novel.

Gatsby’s position in society, shown by the setting that he represents, diminishes the tragic nature of the novel. He is superior to inhabitants of the ‘Valley of ashes’ such as Myrtle and George Wilson, who hold a low position which is indicated by Myrtle’s purchase of ‘a copy of Town Tattle’, which shows her to be more concerned with common gossip and socially inferior to West egg inhabitants such as Nick who reads the ‘Tribune’, a much more respectable sounding newspaper. This contrast is also shown in the description of the Valley of ashes, which Fitzgerald describes as ‘desolate’, showing the lack of care, and attention that is given to it by society and the low position which it, and by extension its residents, hold. In comparison, the ‘spanking new’ tower of Gatsby’s mansion shows his superior social status. However, he is socially inferior to Tom, Daisy and others whose wealth comes from ‘old money’, and this is reflected in the ‘white palaces of fashionable east egg’ that they inhabit, which represent a higher social position than Gatsby’s ‘mansion’. However, his place in the social hierarchy is not as…

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