Depicting masculinity: The Great GatsbyThere are many different types of people in this world that try to persuade others on how dominate and powerful they can be. Some can show it off really easy with material things and others have a struggle to find it. Throughout the dramatic novel of The Great Gatsby, three different male characters display their own unique traits on how they show off their manliness. Whether it’s through the classic strong man of Tom Buchanan, the new money and sketchy background of Jay Gatsby or the quiet, soul searching Nick Caraway, there is a sense of competition among this group of men to establish masculinity in their own different way. In the story, one of these characters distinguished his masculinity in a more ideal way than the other two and established a more authoritative way of doing things. In his novel of The Great Gatsby, Fitzgerald demonstrates how masculinity is defined better through Tom Buchanan than the other characters because of his cleverness and controlling ways towards others in the story.Even though he tries to establish his way of masculinity in the story, Nick Caraway seems to have a harder time doing this than the other two more successful individual’s. Coming from the Midwest to find out what he can do on his own and with very little money, Nick had no real established connections of work or social life when he arrived to the major city except onlyMiles 2
really with the Buchanan’s. At the time Nick was hanging out with them, he showed he could not assertively voice his own decision making and views. An example that Fitzgerald gives of this is when Nick went with Tom and Myrtle to city one day. In The Great Gatsby, Nick had said “ ‘Hold on I said, I have to leave you …
…de to partake in show how someone can either rise or fall in their life and how they are viewed amongst their peers. Throughout the entire story of The Great Gatsby, many diverse masculinities stood out between the main male characters, especially Tom’s. Through his clever wittiness and assertiveness toward others, Tom easily shows that he was in control in the story and that is why he ended up as the most successful portraying what masculinity was truly like during the time when Fitzgerald wrote the story. Even though he almost had his life turned upside down multiple times in the story, Tom pulled through in the end through his cleverness and assertiveness dealing with certain problems, which helped create the dominant masculinity of the story.
Fitzgerald, F. Scott. The Great Gatsby. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1925. Print.