The Great Gatsby

Topics: F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby, Jay Gatsby Pages: 4 (1396 words) Published: September 26, 2013
One of the Few Honest People
Merriam- Webster defines honesty as “free from fraud or trickery,” but in The Great Gatsby, however, “honesty does not seem to determine which characters are sympathetic and which are not in this novel quite the same way that it does in others” (GradeSaver). F. Scott Fitzgerald has incorporated many different themes into The Great Gatsby, but one of the more prevalent themes is one of dishonesty, displayed through the characters’ various actions and affairs. Fitzgerald portrays this theme through the characters, Tom, Daisy, Myrtle, Gatsby, Jordan, and the narrator, Nick.

To begin, the theme of deceit is most obviously portrayed through Fitzgerald’s character, Tom. Tom Buchanan is the husband of Daisy, to whom he has been unfaithful throughout the entire novel. He takes his mistress’s calls at dinner while his wife and their guests wait in the next room. Tom even goes as far as to take Daisy’s cousin, Nick, to meet “his girl.” “’Myrtle’ll be hurt if you don’t come up to the apartment. Won’t you, Myrtle?’” (Fitzgerald 28). The author displays the theme of deception through Tom’s statement here and through many others like it. It means nothing to Tom to lie to the people close to him. The literary experts at SparkNotes also came to this conclusion: “While Tom is forced to keep his affair with Myrtle relatively discreet in the valley of the ashes, in New York he can appear with her in public, even among his acquaintances, without causing a scandal” (SparkNotes Editors). Deceit and dishonesty is primarily portrayed through the character Tom in his dialogue and actions throughout The Great Gatsby.

In addition, although she is not as directly dishonest as her husband, Daisy’s character also signifies the reoccurring theme of corruption and lies. Even though she is not outright dishonest in the novel, she does allow people to believe that it was Gatsby who killed Myrtle, not her. “’Was Daisy driving?’ ‘Yes,’ he said after a moment,...
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