The Great Gatsby Pathological Narcissism Analysis

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The Great Gatsby, a surrealist novel written by F. Scott Fitzgerald, has been praised as an American classic. One of the main intrigues of this novel is the character of Jay Gatsby, an enigmatic and wealthy man who becomes the subject of the book. There are dissenting opinions on the mysterious character of Jay Gatsby and what he represents. While Jay Gatsby has been characterized as a sinister gangster and a classic romantic, it is more probable that he is a pathological narcissist with slightly sinister habits. Jay Gatsby exemplifies many characteristics of a pathological narcissist, as argued in “Gatsby is a Pathological Narcissist” by Giles Mitchell. His feelings of entitlement, manipulative nature, and determination to get Daisy are all …show more content…

Pauly. The 1920s brought a challenge to the stereotypical, shadowy gangster with the introduction of the “dandy.” These new gangsters were manipulative and sinister, but kept it hidden beneath style, wealth, and mystery. Jay Gatsby falls into this category of criminal, as his extravagance and grandeur hides illicit activities (Pauly 42). Gatsby’s illegal activities are never explicitly stated, but they are referenced throughout the book. One example of this is the phone call from Chicago, a city infamous for organized crime in the 1920s, that Nick intercepts in which the caller “blurts out how his disposal of the stolen bonds has miscarried” (Pauly 46). Bonds are again referenced when Gatsby tries to recruit Nick into his “confidential” work (Pauly 51). There is also the ominous character of Meyer Wolfsheim, who fixed the 1919 World Series and repeatedly talks to Gatsby about “business” matters. This sinister side of Gatsby may tie into his narcissistic personality. Because Gatsby believes he is entitled to wealth, he carries out criminal activities without thinking of consequences or the law. He believes himself to be invulnerable because of his narcissism, as seen when the police officer tries to pull him over and he merely flashes him a white card and gets out of trouble. Though he is a narcissist and a possible criminal, some critics see Gatsby’s actions more similar to those of a hopeless

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