Technique of Indirect Characterization in The Great Gatsby

Last Updated: 18 Apr 2023
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There is no single work of literature in the world, where a full, completed characterization of a person would be, no matter if he/she is the main character, or does not play any role in the novel at all. The main idea is to develop an image of a character through actions of others, and as it gets more complicated, the greater novel becomes. In Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby” the author uses the technique of indirect characterization to make the reader feel the atmosphere of the society of the nineteen-twenties by analyzing its behavior.

Gatsby, the true representative of all the greatness, richness, and beautifulness of the period, plays the main role in the novel by being the most mysterious and fabulous person. This is the reason why everyone talks about him and creates various rumors about his enigmatic life. Nick and Jordan also play important roles. Their main job is to transmit the Gatsby’s character. During their first meeting they mentioned Gatsby’s name only once, but then it became usual and kept being talked about.

When they first kissed, Jordan had already told Nick about Gatsby’s love to Daisy. These discussions tied them together. And as the relationship between Nick and Jordan becomes closer, more information the reader gets from the novel. There is another situation when Nick finds out some negative characteristics of Jordan, such as carelessness, the unsuccessful time period of Gatsby’s life becomes being known by Nick, and so, by the reader.

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Nick’s company makes Gatsby feel more comfortable and opened. He is not afraid of being trustful with him, because recognizes an unaffected person in Nick, it reminds Gatsby of himself. Nick, in his turn, finds out some characteristics of Gatsby, and creates an image of a swift, strong, and sometimes embarrassed man. The idea of manipulating characters in order to describe someone in a novel makes the reader think on the work, try to reorganize thoughts, and complete the image of the character.

Related Questions

on Technique of Indirect Characterization in The Great Gatsby

Does Great Gatsby use indirect characterization?
Yes, Great Gatsby does use indirect characterization. The reader is able to infer character traits and motivations from the characters' actions, dialogue, and interactions with other characters. Additionally, the narrator often provides insight into the characters' thoughts and feelings.
What is indirect characterization in The Great Gatsby?
Indirect characterization in The Great Gatsby is when the author reveals information about a character through their actions, words, thoughts, and interactions with other characters. This allows the reader to infer the character's personality and traits without the author explicitly stating them.
What technique do authors use for indirect characterization?
Authors use a variety of techniques for indirect characterization, such as dialogue, physical description, and the actions and reactions of the characters. They also use the thoughts and feelings of the characters to reveal their personalities and motivations. Additionally, authors may use the opinions of other characters to provide insight into the character being characterized.
What is the indirect characterization of Daisy Buchanan in The Great Gatsby?
Daisy Buchanan is indirectly characterized in The Great Gatsby as a woman who is beautiful, wealthy, and careless. She is portrayed as a symbol of the carefree lifestyle of the wealthy during the 1920s, and her actions and words often reflect her lack of concern for the consequences of her choices.

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Technique of Indirect Characterization in The Great Gatsby. (2017, Apr 24). Retrieved from

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