Gatsby Chapter 4 essay
How does Fitzgerald tell the story in Chapter 4?
Throughout the chapter Fitzgerald uses a variety of different disciplines to tell the story of Gatsby, Nick and the other characters. In chapter 4, Fitzgerald uses narrative voice to portray Gatsby’s mysterious nature. Gatsby’s description of his background to Nick is a daunting puzzle—though he rattles off a seemingly far-fetched account of his grand upbringing and heroic exploits, he produces what appears to be proof of his story. Nick finds Gatsby’s story “threadbare” at first, but he eventually accepts at least part of it when he sees the photograph and the medal, ‘He reached into his pocket, and a piece of metal, slung on a piece of ribbon, fell into my palm’ Nick also expresses his surprise at the validity in Gatsby’s story ‘to my astonishment the thing had an authentic look’. Fitzgerald has cleverly used symbolism to portray how Gatsby has to act in everyday life. Gatsby and Nick travel through the Valley of Ashes at ‘great speed’, symbolizing Gatsby’s reluctance to be left in the middle, to not be on top in the wealthy part of New York anymore, as last time he was left he lost Daisy . They are stopped by police officers, who when shown a card by Gatsby leaves them alone, ‘Sorry Mr. Gatsby sir’ this shows the height of materialism and how the rich can easily manipulate the law due to their wealth. Fitzgerald uses this to introduce another discipline, Themes, through corruption. In this Chapter Nick meets Gatsby ‘friend’ Meyer Wolfshiem, The luncheon with Wolfshiem gives Nick the impression that Gatsby’s fortune may not have been obtained honestly, ‘I handed the money too…’ . Nick perceives that if Gatsby has connections with such characters as Wolfshiem, he might be involved in organized crime or bootlegging. In contrast to this when Jordan tells Nick of Gatsby’s ‘other life’ before his illegally obtained wealth she presents him as a lovesick teenager with maybe slight...
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