What is Nick’s attitude toward Gatsby in the book?

Updated 21 March, 2023
Nick's attitude towards Gatsby is complex and evolves throughout the book. At first, Nick is fascinated by Gatsby and drawn to his extravagant parties and wealth. However, as he learns more about Gatsby's past and true motives, he becomes disillusioned with him. By the end of the book, Nick recognizes the tragic nature of Gatsby's life and admires his unwavering dedication to his dream.
Detailed answer:

In "The Great Gatsby," Nick's attitude towards Gatsby is complex and multifaceted. At times, he is deeply admiring of Gatsby, and at other times he is critical and disillusioned. Nick is initially drawn to Gatsby's aura of mystery and glamour, and he marvels at the opulence of Gatsby's parties. However, as Nick gets to know Gatsby more intimately, he begins to see beyond the facade and into the man's flaws and insecurities.

One example of Nick's admiration for Gatsby can be found early in the novel, when he first encounters him at one of his parties: "I had taken two finger-bowls of champagne, and the scene had changed before my eyes into something significant, elemental, and profound." (Chapter 3) Later, when Nick begins to learn more about Gatsby's past, he expresses sympathy for the man's tragic backstory and his desire to recapture lost love.

However, Nick is also critical of Gatsby's character and actions. He sees him as an imposter who has achieved his wealth and status through illegal means. Nick is also disillusioned by Gatsby's obsession with Daisy and his willingness to manipulate others to achieve his goals. In fact, at one point Nick exclaims: "They're a rotten crowd. You're worth the whole damn bunch put together." (Chapter 8)

Overall, Nick's attitude towards Gatsby is a mix of admiration, disillusionment, and sympathy. He sees Gatsby as a deeply flawed individual who embodies both the best and worst aspects of the American Dream. Through Nick's eyes, we gain a nuanced understanding of Gatsby's character and the world in which he lived.

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