The Great Gatsby: Tragic Hero

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In both A Farwell to Arms and The Great Gatsby there is at least one character that would be considered a tragic hero. A direct example of this type of hero would be Jay Gatsby and Henry Frederic. Frederic, the protagonist in A Farwell to Arms may be defined as a tragic hero [since in parallel] “whereas the tragic catastrophe is supposed to result from the hero’s mistaken actions, tragedy in A Farwell to Arms depends on Federic Henry doing the one thing we most desire him to do and respect him for doing-committing himself in love with Catherine Barkley” (Merill 572). The result of Henry's strong obsession with Catherine Berkley is her death and Henry's catastrophe that follows. In Gatsby's case, his catastrophe is chasing…show more content…
Frederic's response to this is out of character: "Poor Rinaldi, I said. All alone at war with no new girls" (Hemingway 65). Henery's response literally translates to a replica of Rinaldi's moral code and values. Usually, if Federic wasn't drunk he wouldn't have been so easily taken advantage of. Henry regurgitates Rinaldi's comment: women are of a great sexual service and makes a response that is only admirable to his friend: pity that there aren't any available to you (Hemingway 65). Because Henry is so impressionable Rinaldi encourages Henry to take another drink but how often does this happen right after Henry says something? One may infer that Rinaldi is hoping to suppress Henry's thought pattern even more so that Henry becomes more of a replication of his friend. Tragic heros are often times taken advantage of since they don't realize their mistaken actions, Gatsby is a good example of this as well. Federic allowed himself to be drunk by Rinaldi and swayed his way, without saying no. This is an example of Federic's naive nature which is an underling flaw in his character. The same reason why Federic was blown up while eating cheese was because he was naive on the battlefield. Rinaldi reinforces this naivety by encouraging Henry to drink and forget about his situation. If Henry wasn't…show more content…
Gullibility, one might say, as Gatsby believes that a material possession is the equivalent of beauty, compassion and love. This trait is obvious when Gatbsy is introduced to Daisy. "It amazed him—he had never been in such a beautiful house before. But what gave it an air of breathless intensity, was that Daisy lived there—it was as casual a thing to her as his tent out at camp was to him" (Hemingway 148). The most profound statement was that "it amazed him" since Daisy's house is what is meant by it. What is worth noting is the reader only a glimpse of wealth's effect on Gatsby at this point. On the following page when Gatsby is fantasizing about Daisy's house, he mentions how the house exhibits strong emotion and how these were strong assets to him. A reader who is rational might realize that a house cannot bear emotions and therefore, is a false fallacy, to the extent of a personification. Usually during the occurrence of a tragedy, a character will take mistaken actions that will result in their demise provided this was cited by Merill. Nick is even concerned for his friend and doesn't believe that Gatsby has a clear definition of love or any human understanding. When Nick says: "He might have despised himself, for he had a certainty taken her under false pretenses ... he had deliberately given Daisy a sense of security; he let her beileve ... that he was able to take care of her" (Hemingway
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