How does Fitzgerald tell the story in Chapter 1?
Fitzgerald opens chapter 1 by presenting the character of Nick Carraway from Minnesota, who is the narrator of “The Great Gatsby”, looking back on his “younger and more vulnerable years”. The novel starts at the end of the story, and then Nick gets into telling the story later on in chapter 1, after reflecting on Gatsby’s death. Fitzgerald presents the character of Nick as a loyal, well-spoken, understanding man, and might have chosen to write the novel from Nick’s point of view because he is a passive observer in the novel and does not get involved in situations.
This chapter introduces two of the main scenes and places in the novel, the East Egg and the West Egg, which are separated by a small expanse of water. The East Egg is associated with the Buchanans and represents the aristocratic, whereas the West Egg is associated with Gatsby and his mansion, and his self-made fortune. Fitzgerald uses these places to show the contrast between the different characters throughout the novel. It is evident that there is a contrast between these two settings in the novel as Nick says that the “[East] was sharply different to the West”, which shows that the characters in these settings have many differences.
Also in this chapter, the readers are introduced to other characters, the Buchanans (Tom and Daisy), and Jordan Baker when Nick goes to the East Egg to have dinner at his cousin, Daisy’s house. The reader’s interpretation of these characters is how Nick sees them and describes them, which is why his protagonist role is very important in the way in which the story is told throughout the novel. Also from Nick’s narrative, in chapter 1we see that unlike Nick, Tom is very arrogant and dishonest at the dinner party, advancing racist comments, and also having public affairs. We get the impression that Daisy is very emotional and tries to appear “shallow” as she says that she hopes her baby daughter will be fool, because...