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A really common essay prompt/discussion topic for The great Gatsby is to have actually you compare and contrast a pair of personalities in Gatsby. Why carry out teachers love this prompts so much?

These compare/contrast essays space an opportunity for you to tie the personality similarities and differences to larger observations about society and class, the American Dream, or identity in the novel. Castle also allow you to practice standard English class skills: nearby reading, making use of lines native the message as evidence, and also taking a stance and presenting a supporting debate in an essay.

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We’ll go over some simple dos and don’ts for composing compare/contrast essays before diving into some evaluation of the many asked-about character pairings. Keep reading if you have actually a Compare/Contrast assignment on the horizon!

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The do"s of acompare and contrast essayThe don"ts the a compare comparison essayWhy some characters are paired because that comparison an ext often than othersAnalysis of and also essay topic principles for the most common character pairs:Nick and GatsbyTom and also GeorgeTom and also GatsbyDaisy and also JordanDaisy and also Myrtle

What to do in a Compare/Contrast Essay

Like noþeles you write for English class, her essay must be plainly organized, with a thesis statement (a one-sentence an introduction of her argument), and topic sentences for each human body paragraph.

And you should definitely have an as whole argument! The point of the compare/contrast essay isn’t for you to simply list the differences and also similarities between two characters, you should take those observations and make a larger argument about the novel together a whole. That bigger argument allows you to practice writing one essay that has an argument, i beg your pardon is a ability that practically all English teachers are focused on building.

To take a quick example, don’t just list the differences between Tom Buchanan and Jay Gatsby. Instead, make an dispute like, “Fitzgerald’s portrayal of wealthy new York society through Jay Gatsby and Tom Buchanan permits him to critique both old money and the recently rich, if reserving his many pointed critiques for the old money crowd.” (Obviously, that’s simply one example, and there room dozens of potential disagreements you might make while comparing and also contrasting characters in Gatsby!)

Make sure to address your larger argument in each body paragraph as you draw out the similarities and differences in between the two characters. Nothing get caught in the weeds together you tease the end the plenty of differences and similarities in each character pair. Constantly link ago to the enlarge picture.

Finally, analyze each quote friend use – in various other words, don’t stick a quote in her essay and do nothing through it. Make certain to explain how and also why the quote demonstrates a vital similarity or difference, and what that method for your bigger argument.

What to protect against in a Compare/Contrast Essay

Don’t simply list differences and also similarities there is no an overarching argument. Although girlfriend can absolutely start brainstorming by do a perform of similarities and also differences, simply presenting that list in essay type won’t gain you a great grade, since you need to go deeper and also explain what the similarities/differences suggest around the novel together a whole.

And, top top the other side, don’t make big claims there is no some proof from the text to ago them up. For example, don’t say “Tom is selfish if Gatsby cares around others.” Prove those 2 separate cases (Tom is selfish” and “Gatsby cares about others”) with pertinent lines indigenous the book. (And if you’re having actually a hard time locating an excellent quotes, uncover a digital variation of Gatsby you have the right to search using the CTRL-F function. That a lifesaver once gathering relevant quotes for one essay!)

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The garden gnome agrees - our essay tips have actually helped the out much more than you"ll ever know.

Why are These characters Paired many Often?

We will tackle these major pairings in the following sections the this article:

Nick Carraway and also Jay GatsbyTom Buchanan and Jay GatsbyTom Buchanan and George WilsonDaisy Buchanan and also Jordan BakerDaisy Buchanan and also Myrtle Wilson

Before us dig right into the analysis, you can be wondering: “why room we only comparing characters of the very same gender?” or maybe “why not other pairings? Why no Jordan and Myrtle, or Nick and also Tom?” We are concentrating on these specific pairings due to the fact that they room by far the most frequently asked around pairs in essay prompts and also discussion topics for The good Gatsby. And also we desire this guide, first and foremost, to be beneficial to students together you work-related on assignments involving Gatsby!

Furthermore, these pairings help teachers get you to check out some of the novel’s bigger themes. Because that example, compare Daisy/ Myrtle or Tom/George can assist you discover the differences in between the wealthy and also the functioning class.Comparing Daisy/Myrtle or Daisy/Jordan can help you check out the changing status that women during the 1920s. Comparing Tom and Gatsby can acquire at the old money/new money divide. Finally, differences betweenNick and also Gatsby raisesome the the novel’s larger questions about the American Dream, repeating the past, and identity. In short, this pairings have become common because they every allow relatively easy access to one of the novel’s larger issues.

That’s no to say you couldn’t also explore some of those themes by comparing, say, Jordan and George, or Daisy and also Gatsby, yet cross-gender compare/contrast essays can be difficult because the condition of women and men is so different in the novel. If you room interested in seeing exactly how a particular male and also female character are paired, you might be far better off studying them v the lens of love, desire, and relationships in the novel, or through the way they called to one of the novel"s icons or motifs.

With those thoughts in mind, let"s jump into the top 5 pairings! for each pairing, us will suggest a few possible larger arguments you deserve to either develop from or disagree with, but these are much from comprehensive! friend should include to our analysis of the characters and also come up v an argument you’re excited about.

Quick keep in mind on our Citations

Our citation layout in this overview is (chapter.paragraph). We"re using this system due to the fact that there are many editions the Gatsby, so using page numbers would certainly only occupational for students with our copy of the book. To find a quotation we cite via chapter and paragraph in your book, you deserve to either eyeball that (Paragraph 1-50: start of chapter; 50-100: center of chapter; 100-on: end of chapter), or usage the search duty if you"re utilizing an digital or eReader version of the text.

Nick Carraway and also Jay Gatsby

Although Jay Gatsby and Nick Carraway varyboth in outlook and temperament, lock are additionally alike ininteresting ways. In spite of somewhat similardesires, attitudes, and also social positions, Nick and also Gatsby make really different selections during the novel.

Love and Romance.Nick and Gatsbyboth want womenthat are out of your reach, although in different degrees. Daisy is miles above Gatsby in terms of social class. Jordan and Nick are of the very same social status, yet Jordan doesn"t seem free to do her very own decisions because an aunt controls her financial life.There is a far-reaching passion gap between Gatsby and Nick together well. Gatsby obsesses end Daisy- he has thought that nothing else for five years, going as far regarding buy a house throughout the bay from her simply in situation she notices. Nick, meanwhile, is attractive to Jordan"s cool and self-sufficient demeanor, but he is plainly not in love v her, as he himself notes ("I wasn"t in reality in love, but I felt a sort of tender curiosity" (3.159)).

Approach to Women.Both males are not specifically interested in the inner resides of the women they want to be with. Gatsby is devastated when Daisy doesn"t want to renounce her connection with Tom completely. Similarly, Nick cavalierly discounts Jordan"s penchant to lie, cheat, and generally it is in cynically uninterested in various other people, and also then is deep disappointed when she action this means after Myrtle"s death.

Class and also Social Standing.Although bothGatsby and also Nick space outsiders to the wealthy communities of East and West Egg, Nick is a much much more in-between character socially than Gatsby. Nick is familiar with the methods of the old money crowd since of his very own family"s privilege and the reality that that is concerned Daisy. Gatsby isnot just self-made, however is a criminal whois desperate to pass as part of the old money elite without learning its custom-mades or rule of behavior.What isolates Nickfrom east Egg life is his Midwestern values and the prestige he locations on morality and also decency. Gatsby is isolated from anyone by the fact that he deserve to never actually be himself - that is always playing a duty and placing on his "Oxford man" persona. It might be this sense of feeling out of ar that connects them.

Outlook and Temperament.Gatsby is one optimist (almost come a delusional degree)while Nick is a realist who finds Gatsby"s idealism inspiring and admirable. Gatsby to trust in his capacity to form his very own life and also future, which provides sense due to the fact that he has regulated to transform himself from a farmer to a successful gangster, come impersonate one "Oxford man," and to accumulatea terrific amount of riches in a very short time. This id in his power equates to Gatsby being certain that he and Daisy can go earlier to their month the idyllic love (""Can"t repeat the past?", he cry incredulously. "Why of course you can!"" (6.129).Nick tries his finest to be an objective realist and also to power in his tendency to referee others. The is deeply in awe the self-directed men like Gatsby, and also even Wolfshiem (Nick is amazed come think that one man can be behind a vast event like therigged people Series).

Ambition.Gatsby desires of greatness. As a young guy his mind “romped prefer the psychic of God,” and also so together an adult, he seems to have made great on this promise by purchase the most ridiculous mansion and throwing the many extravagantparties (6.134). Nick is much much less ambitious in comparison. If he come to new York seek excitement, he doesn"t want to it is in the wealthiest shortcut salesman on wall Street or to have the biggest house. That is happy to be an observer at the leaf of the drama fairly than gift in its midst.

Nick and also GatsbyEssay Ideas

Here arepotential disagreements to build on or disagree with based ours observations. This are absolutely not the only possible arguments, so it is in creative! Make certain your essay considers what the similarities and differences in between Nick and Gatsby reveal about the novel as a whole.

Nick is a passive person and Gatsby is active, which is why Gatsby is the hero and also Nick simply the observer.Nick has much an ext in common with Gatsby 보다 he think he does, which explains why he becomes so enamored that him.Nick serves together a foil (someone whoserves together a contrast)to Gatsby, which provides Nick the best possible observer that Gatsby.At the end of the novel, Tom states that Gatsby “threw dirt in eyes, similar to Daisy’s,” an interpretation thatboth Nick and Daisy were taken in and could never see the true Gatsby: a narcissist and also a criminal.Tom is best - the whole novel is Nick trying to spin a negative character into a hopeful one.

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Nick Carraway: master of rotate or simply along for the ride?

Tom Buchanan and Jay Gatsby

As they fight overDaisy’s love, Tom Buchanan and Jay Gatsby periodically seem surprisingly similar - specific in your self-centeredness, wealth, and concern v appearances. At the very same time, these surface parallelspoint to majorconflictsin their social class, and say a lot around the world of the novel.

Appearance.Gatsby is driven by his materialism to be an extremely invested having fashionable clothes, a beautiful mansion, and also visually overwhelmingparties - for him, the outfit is the thing that renders the Oxford man. Meanwhile because Tom doesn"t have to dress the component of the moneyed elite to be one, he is rather veryattuned come the behavior of others. This is why he immediately seeshow fakeGatsby"s persona is, both because of Gatsby"s overly ostentatious clothes, and because of how much Gatsby misreads the fake invite from the Sloanes. Tom is never fooled right into thinking that Gatsby isanything other than an upstart, and mostly most likely a criminal one.

Self-Centeredness.Tom and also Gatsbyare both totally selfish, and totally convinced the their desires need to be acquiesced to by those around them. Tom, because that example, start his affair through Myrtle by pushing himself against her on a train platform - basically, his version of flirting is bodily assault. Gatsby, meanwhile, additionally thinks naught of starting anaffair with a married woman, assuming the his obsessive feelings are enough to justify any behavior.

Wealth.Despite the truth that both space unimaginably rich, these men come from completely different sides of the huge money divide.Tom come fromold money and also is forever worried about the intervention of the nouveau riche, minorities, and also others ~ above what he thinks is his. At the exact same time, Gatsby is the many successful the the novel"s many ambitious social climbers, utilizing his absence of ethical scruples come parlay his criminal task into a higher social status.

Power.Tom loves being an effective and wieldshis strength directly. The is physically aggressive and uses his human body to threaten and intimidate (Nick, because that one, is plainly very cowed by Tom"s bulk). That is also quick to violence, even if it is it"s socially sanctioned - like his football accomplishments - or no - like when he division Myrtle"s nose without a 2nd thought.Gatsby additionally holdssignificant power, yet his techniques are much much more indirect. Still, even if it is he is offering Nick part illegal bond trading action, or showing off his get-out-of-a-ticket-free card to a cop ~ above the highway, Gatsby is clearly happy to it is in in control of a situation.

Love. Tom and also Gatsby both it seems ~ to be in love v Daisy. But what does the really average to each of them? for Tom, Daisy is clearly partly appealing because she completes his horse-riding, eastern Egg, 350-thousand-dollar pearl necklace lifestyle. He cheats on her because he clearly has never denied self anything, yet he also understands Daisy as a person. He knows the she is as well weak to leave him, yet he also loves her sufficient to tolerate her affair with Gatsby and to continue to be with she after Myrtle"s murder.Gatsby"s love, top top the various other hand, is in some ways purer due to the fact that he for this reason idealizes Daisy and also connects her to every one of his various other hopes and dreams. Yet this love is overly pure - he doesn"t yes, really seem to recognize Daisy as anything other than one idealized object, and is incapable of accepting the she has led a life apart from him for five years.

Tom and also Gatsby Essay Ideas

In a compare/contrast essay, you can not just current a perform of similarities and differences. You likewise need to have actually an underlying discussion you’re supporting. Feel complimentary to take it these at face value or together jumping-off points for your own thoughts.

Tom loves Daisy as a person, Gatsby loves her together an idea.Both Tom and also Gatsby’s tendency to regulate women and also see them as prizes expose the misogyny that the 1920s.Although Tom look at Gatsby as someone from an completely different course than him, what they have actually in common (selfishness, affairs, obsession with appearances) renders a larger debate for an overall moral hollowness that the affluent of any type of class.We check out both Gatsby and also Tom v the eyes of Nick, that worships one of them and also hates the other. In reality, they are both much more similar than different, and also their various treatment reveals Nick"s insecurities and biases.

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Gatsby gives new meaning to letting perfect it is in the opponent of the good.

Tom Buchanan and also George Wilson

At first, most readers check out Tom Buchanan and George Wilsonas opposites. But, these markedly different characters face very comparable circumstances andoffer 2 takes on masculinity and power in the novel.

Appearance and Presence.Where Tom is solid and cowering, George is meek and also shrinking. Tom exudes power and also confidence when George often tends to just fade right into the background. These differences are borne the end in the way these 2 men interact with the world. Tom is violent towards others, when George’s instinct is to be passive or to try and escape situations, the noteworthy exceptions gift his locking increase of Myrtle and also murder the Gatsby. Tom is confident, privileged, and assured while George is timid; George is “ruled by his wife” wherein Tom is selfish and acts on his own desires.

Reaction come Adversity. there is a dramatic difference in the method the 2 menreactto the factthat your wives are cheating top top them. Tom notices Daisy’s love because that Gatsby and immediately beginning making strength plays. Top top the various other hand, George discovers Myrtle’s affair and also is undone by it. Nick to compare the two males in a memorable description:

“the shock had actually made the physically sick. I stared at him and also then in ~ Tom, who had actually made a parallel discovery less 보다 an hour before--and it occurred to me that there to be no difference between men, in intelligence or race, so extensive as the difference in between the sick and the well. Wilson to be so sick that he looked guilty, unforgivably guilty--as if he had just obtained some negative girl with child" (7.160).

In this description, Tom is “well” and George is “sick.” Theseare absolutely arresting ways to explain Tom"s more traditional masculinity and also George"s less overtly mrs character. Tom is self-assured in the challenge of adversity and also immediately takes activity to win Daisyback,insisting on control Gatsby"s car, bullying those around him into driving to Manhattan, and also using his romance an abilities to repeat Daisy of the pluses of their relationship. Meanwhile, George"s weaknessmakeshim look sick and also guilty as he contemplates Myrtle"s betrayal and isdriven come violence come reassert his strength over her.

Approach come Women.Both Tom and also George i think they recognize what’s best for their wives: Tom dismisses Daisy’s professed love for Gatsby despite their apparent closeness, when George is identified to take it Myrtle the end west as soon as he learns about the affair. But, while it appears that Tom does basically understand Daisy and is right about her unwillingness to leaving their marriage, George is unable to organize on come Myrtle one of two people emotionally or physically. She is eliminated trying to operation away native him.

Tom and George Essay Ideas

Differences in attitude and outcome, despite a fairly similar situation, disclose some unexpectedtruths aboutthe civilization of the novel. Controversy the turning back of any type of of these topics for a really provocative essay!

The fact that Tom manipulates George right into killing Gatsby and also then himself (which allows Tom and also Daisy to walk away from the entire affair without consequence) shows the large privileges of having actually money in the novel.Nick"s approach to Tom and George mirrors his admiration that a physical, brutish, domineering type of masculinity.The fact that the relatively an excellent guy turns right into a murderer while the negative guy stays to cheat one more day isavery pessimistic takeon what happens in a people without a moral compass.

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Perhaps the shouldn"t be surprised that the meeker male turns the end to it is in the ultraviolent one.

Daisy Buchanan and Jordan Baker

Despite Daisy Buchanan and Jordan Baker"ssimilar “white girlhoods” (1.140) in Louisville, your attitude and also motivations are rather distinct, making them really exciting to compare and contrast.

Attitude and also Outlook.Both Daisy and Jordan display screen an entitled, bored perspective that’s common of Fitzgerald’s relenten of the old money segment of wealthy brand-new York society. The fact that lock are presented in tandem, both lying on the couches in their white dresses, speaks to your initially comparable attitudes. But soon we watch how different their bring away on this kind of life are.Daisy is progressively despondent, also nihilistic, asking in chapter 7, “what candlestick we execute today, and tomorrow, and for the following thirty years?” (7.74). Jordan on the other hand is a realistic opportunist, who sees possibilities everywhere, arguingthat “life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall” (7.75). In other words, Daisy’s downhearted attitude from thing 1 comes with again, while Jordan, regardless of coming throughout as pessimistic and sharp, in reality still appears excited about the possibilities life has to offer.

Appearance and also Personality.Both Daisy and also Jordan an extremely alluring in their very own way, despite Daisy’s allure comes v her enchanting voice and also feminine charms, if Jordan is masculine, “jaunty,” witty, sharp, and physical.Daisy maintains a squeaky-clean reputation despite moving with a fast crowd, when there space plenty that rumors about Jordan’s cheating in golf, and Nick comment on her corrupt attitude.More significantly, Daisy is very self-absorbed when Jordan is an extremely observant.

Role in Society.Daisy appears caught in between what society expects the her and also some deeper, an ext powerful desires she can not name, leading to restlessness, depression, and also her affair.Daisy is sticking to her prescribed societal function by marrying and also having a child, while Jordan dram golf, “runs roughly town” and also doesn’t it seems to be ~ to it is in in a hurry to marry, at the very least in the beginning of the novel. Perhaps Jordan is still somewhat optimistic about the possibilities of life because she hasn’t cleared up down yet, if Daisy realizes that nothing significant in her life will readjust at this point.Jordan, meanwhile, is contents to follow after fun and also intrigue via various other people’s negative behavior. And also she doesn’t acquire dragged down by the tragedy in the book – ~ above the contrary, she is callous in how little Myrtle’s fatality seems to shake her, coolly calling Nick the following day and also asking that to accomplish like nothing has happened (8.50-61). Probably her motivations are a little bit less available to the reader because her function was substantially downsized between some the Fitzgerald’s previously drafts. But in any kind of case, together we watch Daisy battle in her marriage, what we view of Jordan is cool, calm, collected, and also rather uncaring.

Daisy and also Jordan Essay Ideas

So what room some feasible conclusions us can attract from Daisy and Jordan’s characters? one of the most common strategies is to tie the differences in between these women onto oneof the book’s bigger themes, favor the duty of culture and course or the American Dream. Another is to think about crucial feature the the novel, prefer Nick’s narration, and see what this two personalities can reveal around it. Through those strategies in mind, below are some potential disagreements you can argue for or against!

Jordan and also Daisy, because they are typically disempowered, both usage their sexuality in various ways to acquire power, with different results.Despite Jordan’s overt cheating and lying, Daisy is, in fact, the more morally compromisedperson.The method Nick treats Jordan versus the means he describes Daisy revealsthe novel’s preoccupation with Gatsby over all, come the detriment of the woman characters.

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Dear Diary: this particular day I cheated at golf yet again! however it was nothing contrasted to what my friend Daisy did...

Daisy Buchanan and also Myrtle Wilson

While Daisy Buchanan and also Myrtle Wilson clear come from an extremely different backgrounds and also have conflict motivations, they likewise have part surprising similarities.

Physical Appearance.Daisy and Myrtle both derive power from your looks. Myrtle"s comfort with hervoluptuous bodyis clearly appealing come Tom, while Daisy"s magnetic voice and also ethereal presence obsess Gatsby. Transparent the novel, Myrtle is commonly reduced to being just a human body - one come be used or violated by those around her. Tom sees small inMyrtle as well as someone to either obstacle up against, have actually sex with, or beat at will; George resorts to imprisoning Myrtle when she egg him on come "beat" she (7.314) the means Tom does; and finally, Daisy gruesomely rips Myrtle"s body apart with a car. Meanwhile, Daisy"s voice likewise serves to make her less of a human being in her very own right and more of one idealized, mythic number from fairy tales. For Gatsby, Daisy"s voice is appealing because it is "full of money" (7.105) - he is attracted to her not because of who she is, but due to the fact that he sees her as a prize.

Social Standing.Myrtle puts on the airs the Daisy has actually been born and also raised with. This enables Myrtle come wield considerable social strength within her group, as seen by just how her guests fawn on her at the Manhattan party she throws. Daisy, in contrast, never exerts such overt power over a group – rather, she seems to move with crowds, act what it meant of her (for circumstances marrying Tom regardless of still loving Gatsby).

Love and also Relationships.Daisy and also Myrtle’s marriages are strikingly fairly different. Daisy and Tom are able to continue to be together also through serial affairs and murder. They end uployal co-conspirators, protected by their wealth. Meanwhile, Myrtle has nothing yet disdain forGeorge regardless of his noticeable love for her. Still, both womenuse affairs with other guys as a way toescape. Daisy desires to get away from an significantly unhappy marital relationship and shot to recapture the spontaneity and possibility of her youth, while Myrtle loves the status that her affair v Tom sponsor her.However, both discover that they can not escape forever with their affairs. Obviously, their biggest distinction is thatDaisy it s okay to walk far from the novel unscathed, when Myrtle it s okay killed.

Daisy and Myrtle Essay Ideas

Here are methods to write about these different women who face similar choices with significantly opposite conclusions.

Despite your similarities in action and motivation, Daisy is defended from any lasting damage by her wealth and old money status, when Myrtle is punished for the same behavior, revealing how the course system in America protects the wealthy.The novel refuses to give any kind of inner life to women, and also instead reduces castle to your physical characteristics no issue what social class they come from. Daisy and also Myrtle"s similar treatment through the narrator and also by the men approximately them mirrors that gender trumps class when determining status.Daisy and Myrtle’s similarity reveal how hollow the development of the women’s motion really was at that point in time. In spite of the big gains the motion made in the at an early stage twentieth century, including winning the ideal to vote and pushing for much more freedom in just how they can dress and also act, both of this women’s resides aren’t vastly improved. They’re both trapped in unhappy marriages, castle both count on their looks/charms/sexuality to obtain what they want, and also neither of lock has even a opportunity of follow a fulfilling life with a career.

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The butterfly may be beautiful, yet it"s still trapped.

What’s Next?

Now that you’ve gone end the novel’s most well-known compare/contrast pairings, check outour evaluation of the novel’s romantic pairings in our guide to love, desire, and also relationships in The good Gatsby.

See more: How Do You Connect 12 Dots With 5 Straight Lines, How Do You Connect 12 Dots With 5 Lines

Have one essay around a price or motif? acquire started through our icons overviewand motifs overview.

Still a little hazy on some of the plot facets in Gatsby? no to worry, we have you spanned with our complete book summary!