What is moby dick about
Moby-Dick, or, the Whale by Herman MelvilleIt is the horrible texture of a fabric that should be woven of ships cables and hawsers. A Polar wind blows through it, and birds of prey hover over it.
So Melville wrote of his masterpiece, one of the greatest works of imagination in literary history. In part, Moby-Dick is the story of an eerily compelling madman pursuing an unholy war against a creature as vast and dangerous and unknowable as the sea itself. But more than just a novel of adventure, more than an encyclopaedia of whaling lore and legend, the book can be seen as part of its authors lifelong meditation on America. Written with wonderfully redemptive humour, Moby-Dick is also a profound inquiry into character, faith, and the nature of perception.
This edition of Moby-Dick, which reproduces the definitive text of the novel, includes invaluable explanatory notes, along with maps, illustrations, and a glossary of nautical terms.
Moby Dick - Thug Notes Summary and Analysis
The book is sailor Ishmael 's narrative of the obsessive quest of Ahab , captain of the whaling ship Pequod , for revenge on Moby Dick , the giant white sperm whale that on the ship's previous voyage bit off Ahab's leg at the knee. A contribution to the literature of the American Renaissance , the work's genre classifications range from late Romantic to early Symbolist. Moby-Dick was published to mixed reviews, was a commercial failure, and was out of print at the time of the author's death in
Subversive, queer and terrifyingly relevant: six reasons why Moby-Dick is the novel for our times
Sascha Morrell does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organisation that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment. This is a novel that announces itself as the tale of a whaling voyage, and expands from there as if to encompass the whole of existence. Its narrator, Ishmael, admits he is overwhelmed:. Friends, hold my arms! For in the mere act of penning my thoughts of this Leviathan, they weary me, and make me faint with their out-reaching comprehensiveness of sweep, as if to include the whole circle of the sciences, and all the generations of whales, and men, and mastodons, past, present, and to come, with all the revolving panoramas of empire on earth, and throughout the whole universe, not excluding its suburbs. But whereas the ancient epic presents the world as a unified and coherent totality, the modern world can only hope to express itself through fragmentation, dialogue, digression and collage.
Born in , author Herman Melville grew up during the peak of American dominance of the whaling industry , roughly the period between and the start of the Civil War. Weaving contemporary accounts and his own experiences as a whaler, Melville created his American masterpiece. The young Melville was famously inspired by the story of George Pollard, the former captain of the whaler Essex. While on a two-year whaling expedition crisscrossing the Pacific, the Essex was rammed by a sperm whale. Quickly abandoning ship and thousands of miles from land, Pollard and his crew escaped in leaky lifeboats to begin a horrific ordeal resulting in sickness, starvation, and cannibalism. One of the few to survive, Pollard was given a second chance at captaining another whaler, the Two Brothers.
It is dedicated to Nathaniel Hawthorne. Ishmael, who turns to the sea for meaning, relays to the audience the final voyage of the Pequod , a whaling vessel. Amid a story of tribulation, beauty, and madness, the reader is introduced to a number of characters, many of whom have names with religious resonance.
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The character of Moby Dick is larger than life, but this is an instance where truth is as strange if not stranger than fiction. The white whale is based on a real-life cetacean called Mocha Dick. - T hursday marks the th birthday of Herman Melville — the author of the greatest unread novel in the English language.
Ishmael, the narrator, announces his intent to ship aboard a whaling vessel. He has made several voyages as a sailor but none as a whaler. Since the inn is rather full, he has to share a bed with a harpooner from the South Pacific named Queequeg. They take a ferry to Nantucket, the traditional capital of the whaling industry. There they secure berths on the Pequod, a savage-looking ship adorned with the bones and teeth of sperm whales. The Pequod leaves Nantucket on a cold Christmas Day with a crew made up of men from many different countries and races. He announces his desire to pursue and kill Moby Dick, the legendary great white whale who took his leg, because he sees this whale as the embodiment of evil.