How does Fitzgerald tell the story in Chapter 4?
In the Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald uses various aspects of narrative to bring the story alive and help the reader become immersed in it. In the duration of the first few chapters the reader is introduced to each of the main characters needed for the story and by Chapter 4 almost all of the plotlines have been opened, ready to be explored. Nick is the first-person narrator, telling the story in retrospective and we continue to learn more information about his self-conscious attitude and the way he views particular situations as the novel progresses. The structure of the chapter helps to slow the pace of the novel and this helps to build excitement and tension as the reader is slowly told pieces of Gatsby’s story.
Fitzgerald begins the chapter with detailing a seemingly endless list of pointless rumors regarding Mr. Gatsby who is claimed to have ‘once killed a man' and be ‘second cousin to the devil.’ Despite meeting him in the previous chapter he is still depicted as ‘mysterious’ as even Jordan. Nick continues to list the names of all those that visited Gatsby and describe all those that had come ‘to Gatsby’s house in the summer’. The vast array of ages and backgrounds of these people only increase the frustration in understanding Gatsby, as we cannot place him within any of the structured groups of ‘grey names’. The use of ‘grey’ here links to the dullness and lack of individuality of the ‘valley of ashes’ and how the people that entered Gatsby’s house for the parties were all blank and unknown.
Fitzgerald tells the story in Chapter 4 by delving into the character of Jay Gatsby and the various ways he is presented in comparison to the amount of different sides he has. Throughout the duration of the novel there are three real sides to him; his romantic side, his darker side and his generous side. However in Chapter 4 in particular we are shown the romantic Gatsby, which is juxtaposed with his...
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