The Great Gatsby Questions and Answers
by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Why is Nick Carraway made the narrator of "The Great Gatsby"?

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D. Reynolds eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Nick Carraway is the narrator for several reasons, but the chief reason is his subjective and sympathetic view of Jay Gatsby. In Carraway's lyrical hands and romantic eyes, Gatsby becomes greater than just a vulgar, pretentious grifter and con man in a pink suit who aims too high and loses his life as a consequence.

It is important who tells your story, and in Carraway's telling Gatsby becomes no less than a symbol of the American Dream. To Fitzgerald, the American Dream is the recurring hope of his European ancestors that they could remake the past. They could, they thought, come to this green, pristine (and to their European eyes), unsettled land and start anew, recreating Eden. Gatsby wants to do the same with Daisy , believing that if he can just turn back the hands of time to five years past, he can build a paradise with his beloved. Of course, as with anyone pursing this dream, it is a fantasy that can never be...

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taangerine | Student

Nick Carraway was made the narrator the of the Great Gatsby because he was not physically involved in many of the incidents. He therefore had a neutral understanding and view of how things were played out in the story. 

udonbutterfly | Student

In my opinion Nick is meant to be the objective voice in the book, to look at everyone in an objective way but he judges people from time to time. Imagine if the story was from Daisy's perspective I don't think the story would have been delivered properly.  OR imagine if the story was actually by Gatsby I don't think the story would've been named The Great Gatsby, it would show too much pretentiousness in Gatsby if it were named so. Also the mystery around Gatsby would become nonexistent.