What They Didn’t Teach You About the Great Gatsby’s Nick Carraway


If you have read or are reading ‘The Great Gatsby’, maybe for school maybe for just for fun, you’ll no doubt have some opinions about Nick. He is the narrator of the book so what you think of him will shape you opinion of the whole novel. But for someone so central to the plot he doesn’t talk about himself much. If you do look a bit closer things don’t quite seem to add up, and it bothered me for a little while until, when discussing the book with a friend, it was suggested Nick was gay. Do you have a sneaking suspicion too? or are you looking for something unusual to add to an essay to surprise an examiner. Here is is my attempt to get Nick out of the closet

Great Gatsby quotes about Nick are littered with references to how gorgeous Gatsby is or how handsome or attractive, the list goes on. Now maybe I’m just jealous because only my mother calls my handsome, and I don’t think she really means it, but isn’t that a little bit much. He is infatuated with Gatsby, caught up in his spell, his better judgement succumbing to his fascination. While other characters call him a bootlegger or a gangster or just an ordinary man Nick is always waxing lyrical about his romantic readiness or the pureness of his dream. Isn’t he just a beer baron hung up on his ex girlfriend. How much of all this idealised hero only exists in Nick’s head.

Yes he does have relationships with women, 3 if you’re counting, but he isn’t a Casanova by any standards. He barely mentions any of them, and his reasons for ending them always seem a little suspect. The first because he was scared he was going to get peer pressured into marrying a girl (so scared he moved state), the second because the girl’s brother was looking at him funny and the 3rd, Jordan, because he needed more time to think about Gatsby. Maybe he wanted to look up other words for gorgeous in the thesaurus.

And last but not least there is his, well, one night stand? I don’t really know how to describe it. GO and read the end of chapter 2 again and you’ll see what I mean. They leave the party together, they end up semi naked in his bedroom and then the next think we know it’s 4 am and Nick is getting the train home. All this is described in very little detail I guess that’s is one of the perks of being your own narrator.

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