The Great Gatsby Tom Buchanan Analysis

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How do you respond to the view that it is very difficult for readers to feel anything other than contempt for Tom Buchanan? (21 marks) Tom Buchanan is a character of great importance throughout, and contempt should not be expressed towards his role in the novel. Tom is arguably the antagonist to Gatsby, who is, in the eyes of Fitzgerald, the main character; a protagonist as such. This is apparent through Nick’s narration: telling the story of the life of the last summer that “the Great Gatsby” had before his death and the inclusion of romanticism and tragedy that was bound to be epitomized in the jazz age; a lawless decade, in which the events are set in. Tom’s role is key as his introduction allows the “the history of summer to begin” and…show more content…
The combination of “shinning arrogant” negatively connotes that Tom embraces his persona to the full extent of his capabilities, which is a grave problem since he has inherited “old money” and is one of the richest people known throughout the story. It transcends to his relationship with Gatsby who is indeed poorer than him and how he would downgrade poor people. His mouth being “hard” also substantiates his “vast carelessness” and that the way in which he behaves towards people (in “a supercilious manner”) doesn’t matter to him. Nick’s intrusive narration comes to the forefront of the reader at this point. It leaves us almost, instantly compelled towards having a negative impression of Tom, and to connect, possibly making them conform to his attitudes, as well as others “ at new haven who had hated his guts”. On another note, Nick evokes the believability factor within the reader through utilizing the third person pronoun “ he” followed by his use of passive verbs. E.g. he “had changed” and he “had established dominance over his face”. The effectiveness of these devices enables the emphasis to shift
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