To engage readers, authors use a number of different literary devices. One effective literary device is imagery . Imagery helps readers not only picture events in the novel, but even hear, smell, feel, and taste them. F. Scott Fitzgerald uses imagery throughout The Great Gatsby to paint a vivid picture for the reader, especially when it comes to setting and characters. Fitzgerald describes for readers the desolate and depressed nature of the 'valley of ashes' while bringing to life the grand parties at Gatsby's. Fitzgerald also uses imagery to vividly describe different characters. For example, the rundown nature of George Wilson versus the vivaciousness of his wife Myrtle.
From a modern-day perspective, The Great Gatsby ’s Jordan Baker seems a bit ordinary—a typical modern woman. To the novel’s original audience, however, Jordan’s behavior and attitude place her one step away from scandal. In 1926, many parts of the United States were relatively unaffected by the changes occurring in large urban centers like New York City; Fitzgerald’s main characters are displaced “Midwesterners” for precisely this reason. Publication of The Great Gatsby brought the changes in the air in the twenties to the rest of the nation, through their own eyes. Jordan represents one of the most extreme examples of these changes—the proto-feminist known as a flapper.