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Compare and Contrast: Passage 1: Description of Tom, Passage 2: Gatsbyseen by Nick

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Compare and Contrast: Passage 1: Description of Tom, Passage 2: Gatsby seen by Nick The first passage is a description of Tom. He is portrayed as strongly built: "It was a body capable of enormous leverage-a cruel body." He also seems to be a brutal an supercilious man. Words as "arrogant", "sturdy", "gruff" and "husky" create a mood around him which is quite unpleasant. This description is very objective and we get a clear picture of what Tom looks like. We are also given a description of Tom's voice as being "...a gruff, husky tenor..." The other passage is not really a description of Mr Gatsby, but rather an occasion which he fits into. The description we are given about Gatsby is much more unclear than that of Tom. The night makes the atmosphere more mysterious around Gatsby. Here words as "night", "trembling", "silhouette" and "dark" set the theme of the passage. ...read more.


This personality which Tom is part of does also seem quite primitive and animalistic: He does what his needs and emotions demands of him and he does not seem to hide secrets. This compared to the character of Gatsby which seems to be more complicated and untrustworthy. Tom is a more physical than mental character. Gatsby is on the other hand connected to the night and is a therefore a contrast to Tom. When Tom can be seen in the light, Gatsby "vanishes" in the dark. Hence he is a mysterious character, like a cat and it is interesting to note that there is a cat included in the passage: "The silhouette of a moving cat wavered across the moonlight..." Gatsby is definitely like a cat; a creature of the night, unidentified and unique. Tom is conversely more of a dog: Strong but more primitive. ...read more.


Nonetheless, the passages are quite dissimilar as far as the themes, tones and techniques are concerned. The contrasting themes are day and night and the tone and the techniques are based around these themes. The techniques are quite different in the two passages; in Toms there are many negative words and his body is personified as "cruel". In Gatsby's passage there are more words connected to obscurity and Gatsby is not at all illustrated negatively. The techniques create two contrasting moods in the two passages. Tom's passage is more simple and it is not as interesting to read as Gatsby's passage. Tom's passage is almost unpleasant to read because one could almost think he is a monster by his account. The tone in Gatsby's passage is more calm. The presence of the night makes everything more subjective and abstract. A potential effect of this is that the reader will feel more comfortable with this passage. Things connected to the night are usually more interesting. ...read more.

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