In Which Point of View the Great Gatsby is Written?

Updated 28 August, 2023
"The Great Gatsby" is narrated in the first-person point of view by the protagonist, Nick Carraway. As the narrator, Nick recounts his personal experiences, thoughts, and observations of the events surrounding the lives of Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, and others in the affluent Long Island society. This narrative perspective provides readers with a direct insight into Nick's emotions and perceptions, making them privy to his evolving understanding of wealth, social status, and the American Dream. However, it also offers a limited viewpoint, focusing on Nick's encounters and interpretations while leaving room for readers' interpretations and critical analysis.
Detailed answer:

F. Scott Fitzgerald's novel "The Great Gatsby" is narrated in the first-person point of view. The story is presented through the perspective of the narrator, Nick Carraway. This narrative choice gives readers insight into Nick's thoughts, feelings, and observations, shaping their understanding of the characters and events.

Nick, as the narrator, becomes an intermediary between the readers and the other characters in the story, including Jay Gatsby, Daisy Buchanan, and Tom Buchanan. He provides a lens through which the readers can interpret the actions and motivations of these characters.

The first-person point of view enhances the sense of subjectivity and personal connection. Readers witness the events of the novel from Nick's vantage point, experiencing his emotional reactions and moral reflections. This point of view allows readers to delve into Nick's evolving perceptions of wealth, social class, and the American Dream as he becomes entangled in the lives of the wealthy elite.

For instance, Nick's introspective commentary on Gatsby's elusive nature is a direct result of the first-person perspective: "Gatsby believed in the green light, the orgastic future that year by year recedes before us. It eluded us then, but that's no matter—tomorrow we will run faster, stretch out our arms farther."

However, it's important to note that the first-person narration can also be limited. Nick's viewpoint may not always provide a comprehensive understanding of other characters' motivations or events taking place outside of his direct experiences. This limitation is a deliberate narrative choice made by Fitzgerald to engage readers in Nick's perspective while also leaving room for interpretation and analysis.

In conclusion, "The Great Gatsby" is written in the first-person point of view, with the narrator, Nick Carraway, sharing his personal experiences, thoughts, and observations. This narrative approach immerses readers in Nick's perspective, shaping their understanding of the characters and themes while also acknowledging the limitations inherent in a singular viewpoint.


  1. 1. Fitzgerald, F. S. (2004). The Great Gatsby. Scribner.
    2. Donaldson, S. (2005). Narrator, Narratee, and The Great Gatsby. The Kenyon Review, 27(2), 39-59. Retrieved from
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