Nick Carraway Honesty Analysis

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Joseph B. Wirthlin onced said, “Lying, stealing, and cheating are commonplace.” To say that any human being is completely reliable and honest is unrealistic and to say that Nick Carraway, the narrator from F. Scott Fitzgerald's 1925 novel The Great Gatsby, is completely honest in his narration is also unrealistic and false. Although Nick may not be perfect, he displays stronger examples of reliability rather than dishonesty as a narrator to the wealthy events occurring in Long Island. In the novel, Nick narrates his positive views and reactions of his wealthy West Egg neighbor and inspiration, Jay Gatsby, who tries to achieve his dream of winning his lost love, Daisy Buchanan, back into his life. Nick has a great respect for Gatsby’s ability…show more content…
Nick merely reflects on the actions of others rather than the actions or events he has been a major part of. During one instance, Daisy's husband, Tom Buchanan, invites Nick to a party at the apartment of his mistress, Myrtle Wilson, where Nick can be seen as an truthful observer. The reader finds Nick lacking participation in the party when he describes himself as “the casual watcher in the darkening streets. . . looking up and wondering,” as if he was not even a guest at the party [Fitzgerald 35]. He recounted the occasion as if he was destined to be a spectator from the outside of the party, rather than being influenced by any emotions the party might have made him feel as a participater. Because he acts as the unbiased watcher in the streets rather than the participator, his written observations of the partygoers can be trusted. In many instances, Nick reflects on the actions and events Gatsby participates in, refraining from judgement. In her literary criticism comparing Fight Club and The Great Gatsby, Suzanne Del Gizzo states why “Nick’s distinct and separate existence is so important- it creates an outside perspective from which to view the story of Gatsby” [81]. Nick’s “separate existence” allows the reader to be able to trust Nick’s narration because the story is not from the view of Gatsby himself . If the narrator were to be Gatsby the…show more content…
In the beginning of the novel Nick's father reminds him that a lot of people “haven't had the advantages that [he’s] had”, implying that Nick might have been more wealthy than most people [1]. Although Nick seems to be associated with the wealthier side of the scale, he also seems to acknowledge the lower class as well. When Nick recalls one of Gatsby’s parties, he describes all the excitement and chaos from the night but he also acknowledges the “eight servants, including an extra gardener, toiled all day with mops and scrubbing-brushes and hammers and garden-shears, repairing the ravages of the night before” [39]. As Tom and Daisy seem to have a fueled hatred for any person of the lower class, Nick seems to have a respect and sympathetic pity for the servants having to clean up after the rich. Nick appears to fit in the middle of the classes rather than being a prejudice, snotty, and biased elitist, or a poor, resentful man. Nick can understand the harsh realities of both classes and incorporate them into his story without using discrimination against either because he does not fit into either. Nick is trustworthy because he an onlooker holding the position of a neutral character making it impossible for him to be biased. In James M. Mellard’s literary criticism of the counterpoints of the Great
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