How Does Nick Describe Himself At The Beginning Of The Great Gatsby?

Updated 30 September, 2024
At the beginning of the story, Nick describes himself as being completely bored of the honest Midwest and looking for more excitement in life, so he decides to move to New York to become a “bond man.” A bond man is a person wo is a stockbroker or financier. In the beginning he talks about wanting to teach himself about finance. We can tell from this career in finance indicates his desire for upward class mobility.
Detailed answer:

At the beginning of The Great Gatsby the narrator introduces himself and establishes his place in the novel. So, first of all Nick Carraway, the story's narrator, remembers his upbringing and the lessons his family, his father actually, taught him. Coming from the Midwest, the audience learn of his past and his sense of moral justice, as he begins to unfold the story. The novel immediately starts of by revealing how and why Nick is as an honest narrator. Since reflections on his fathers advice suggest that Nick is non-judgemental and moral. He states: In my younger and more vulnerable years my father gave me some advice that I’ve been turning over in my mind ever since. ‘Whenever you feel like criticizing any one,’ he told me, ‘just remember that all the people in this world haven’t had the advantages that you’ve had.’. And he also says: ‘’In consequence I’m inclined to reserve all judgments, a habit that has opened up many curious natures to me and also made me the victim of not a few veteran bores.’’ So, simply said what he does here is he starts off with the advice of his father and how he how he refrains from judgement towards others. Then he shows how he is a reliable person and narrator in that way too, by taking the example of how in college he was privy to others secrets. He says that he wasn’t actually looking for any for that sort of information. So he would pretend to be asleep, or busy or he would joke with people in a hostile way to prevent them from telling him confidences. So, having a narrator that’s reliable, non- judgemental and has a sense of morality, is the perfect way or you actually have the perfect lens to view this story especially one like this which does include themes of immorality, superficiality and such. In the story we also learn that Nick comes from a quite a good background and education. What is clear from his background that he will fit easily into both social circles, with both the old rich of East Egg and the new rich of West Egg. Residents of East Egg are accustomed to a life of privilege, and generations of wealth. While on the other side, new-money residents, like Gatsby, aren't quite accustomed to their great wealth yet, making them vulnerable in a way since they know what they have to lose. Nick seems the perfect, balanced narrator who is a listener with an open mind to navigate both groups without bias on this specific topic.

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