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Jay Gatsby: Byronic Hero or Tragic Hero?
Transcript of Jay Gatsby: Byronic Hero or Tragic Hero?
According to Miller, the tragic hero exemplifies our "underlying fear of being displaced...torn away from our chosen image of what or who we are in this world." How does Gatsby fit the profile of a Tragic Hero? Jay Gatsby, in that he sacrifices everything (including his life) to secure his "rightful" place as Daisy's true lover, is a tragic hero. Everything he has done in the five years before the novel's beginning, and everything he does throughout the course of the novel, is for the sole purpose of having Daisy declare that she does love Gatsby, and that she never loved Tom. When Gatsby fails to achieve his goal--when he fails to attain the status of sole love that he believes is his--his world falls apart, and he is killed as a result of his own decisions.