On Literature SE there seems to be a general consensus that in the Great Gatsby the narrator, Nick Carraway, is gay (or at the very least sexually ambiguous).

I found this article on one SE answer: Gatsby: Gay Implications in Nick Carraway. While it appeared to answer my question it ultimately skirted around the ultimate significance of Nick being gay and went more for proving the fact.

I am of the same opinion. However I am having trouble understanding why Fitzgerald would choose to make Nick this way. How does it contribute to the reader's understanding of the themes? Did Fitzgerald merely do it because he could?

1 Answer 1


For most of the novel, Nick has a completely erroneous conception of Jay Gatsby. Gatsby is selfish and a criminal. But Nick doesn't notice any of these imperfections in his character. Why not? I'd say because Nick is in love with Gatsby.

Fitzgerald filters the reader's view of Gatsby through Nick's skewed perspective. This is important, because it lets the reader be blindsided by the revelations about Gatsby's true character towards the end of the novel. If Nick wasn't in love with Gatsby, it would be much harder to justify why Nick had such a skewed view of him.

  • That's a very lucid answer! Thank you. I arrived to mostly the same conclusion since I posed this question but one thing I have been conflicted about is whether Nick actually loves Gatsby or the idea of Gatsby(Gatsby being a symbol of hope to the repressed Nick). I haven't been able to find much direct evidence of love/sexual attraction(but rather admiration/idealization). Thank you again!
    – iceninja21
    Mar 1 at 3:54

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