Read an in-depth analysis of Moby Dick.
Queequeg comes from a tribe of cannibals. This tall well-built Fijian, the crown prince of his tribe, is a fine harpooner. He has a "dark, purplish, yellow color, here and there stuck over with large, blackish looking squares To be sure, it might be squares nothing but a good coat of tropical tanning.
During this period, the immigrants who teemed into America even then provided most of the labor in America. They played an important role in building the new nation, despite racial prejudice and harassment from the local white Americans.
This point is brought out well in the chapter where Ishmael and Queequeg are traveling in a schooner and people look at them both surprised and amused at the strange friendship between Ishmael and Queequeg. One of the passengers passes a rather obscene remark at Queequeg, but he ignores him.
However, tension reaches a point, where the captain is called to prevent a fight between Queequeg and the passenger. Among the crew, the officers are all Americans, while the harpooners, the oarsmen and the cook are mainly immigrants from Africa, Australia and the East Indies.
This aspect once again reflects the period of the s when migrants did most of the manual labor. Further, the firm friendship between Ishmael and Queequeg reveals the fact that despite differences in race, religion and language, a bond between human beings can be formed.
In Moby Dick, the sea symbolizes the troubled, unpredictable and uncertain world, where man is struggling to keep his faith and conscience safe. Father Mapple, through his sermon on Jonah and the whale Old Testament, Holy Biblegives out a warning that people who do not follow the word of God will have to face his wrath.
In the biblical story, the ship carrying Jonah to Tarshish is tossed about by a fierce storm on sea. The weather becomes calm only after the crewmembers throw Jonah into the sea to save the ship from destruction.
In the sea, a fish a whale swallows Jonah. As Father Mapple warns all the fishermen to stay away from the path of evil and seek forgiveness from him if they have strayed into the path of evil; the chaplain foretells the outcome of the drama that would soon be enacted on the ship Pequod.
If man strays away from the path laid down by God, he will be punished and he shows this in the case of the Pequod, where Captain Ahab chases the giant white whale.
But his motives are evil and the ship along with its crew heads towards disaster. This storm comes as a warning to Captain Ahab - to give up the evil chase for the whale or else be prepared to perish.
But Ahab, does not pay heed to this warning, blind as he is by rage and revenge. The result is that the Pequod along with its captain drowns in the dark depths of the ocean. As regards Father Mapple and his career as a sailor before he has joined the church, the author seems to be making a few subtle remarks.
Firstly, by showing that a common sailor can rise up to a revered position of a chaplain, the writer is railing against the feudal idea of hierarchy in occupations. Secondly, that the chaplain walks in like any other layman instead of coming in a carriage reveals the superficial customs, traditions and fills attached to the church as an institution that time.
By doing so, Herman Melville reflects in his writing the spirit of his time. During the s, several intellectuals and social reformers were questioning in theory as well as in practice the feudal ideas and interests of that period.
These intellectuals and reformers, especially the Transcendentalists, believed that feudal ideas and customs restrained individual free will and progress. Captain Ahab Captain Ahab is the dark brooding captain of the Pequod.
In Ahab, the author creates the first ever anti-hero of the American novel. For Ahab is portrayed is a brilliant, creative, sensitive as well as competent captain, yet the dark side of Ahab emerges in his obsession of the white whale, Moby Dick.
In his mad pursuit, he does not consider anything or anybody including his crewmembers else important. But in spite of his dictatorial nature, Captain Ahab evokes awe as well as fear, not just in the minds of his crewmembers, but also in the reader. Captain Ahab makes his appearance for the first time on the Pequod after it had set sail from the shore.
Ishmael is struck by his appearance for "He looked like a man cut away from the stake But what strikes Ishmael most is the "Slender rod-like mark, lividly whitish," which runs from his gray hair, down on one side of his tanned face, neck and continues downward to his clothing.
As he stands on the dock, straight and looking extremely serious, Ishmael does not notice that Ahab is standing partly on one white artificial leg.The novel’s antagonist, Moby Dick is a white whale, wild and lethal, hunted by many and killed by none.
No one in the novel, not even Ahab, succeeds in catching the whale, and (read full character analysis). Herman Melville, in his renowned novel Moby-Dick, presents the tale of the determined and insanely stubborn Captain Ahab as he leads his crew, the men of the Pequod, in revenge against the white whale.
Moby Dick, also referred to as the White Whale, is an infamous and dangerous threat to seamen, considered by Ahab the incarnation of evil and a fated nemesis.
Read an in-depth analysis of Moby Dick. Herman Melville's Moby Dick Essay - Moby dick is a novel written by Herman Melville. The books takes place on the open seas, where very little happens.
To Starbuck, Moby Dick is just another whale, except that he is more dangerous. Early in the novel, Starbuck challenges Ahab's motives for altering the ship's mission, from accumulating oil to killing the White Whale.
Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. Home / Literature / Moby-Dick / Analysis / Narrator Point of View ; Analysis / For nearly the first forty chapters of the novel, Moby-Dick is narrated in the first person by Ishmael.
For the rest of the book, Ishmael’s personality (and the first person pronouns) fades in and out.