Moby Dick Criticism

This essay has a total of 1286 words and 7 pages.

Moby Dick

Biographical Insights A. The culture
this great author was a part of was the time in American
history where inspiring works of literature began to emerge.
It was also a time when American writers had not
completely separated its literary heritage from Europe, partly
because there were successful literary genius' flourishing
there. B. Herman Melville was born on August 1, 1819, he
was the son of Allan and Maria Melville. During Herman's
childhood he lived in the "good" neighborhoods of New
York City. In 1832 Herman suffered tragedy when his father
died after trying to cope with the stress of debts and
misfortunes. After a short time in a business house in New
York City, Herman determined he needed to go to sea. He
spent years traveling on a variety of ships, including whaling
ships. C1. Melville's perspective on life is that God created
the universe with an infinite number of meanings and man is
always trying to determine one specific meaning. D2. The
"lessons" that Melville is likely to weave into his writing are
1. An exposition on whales and the whaling industry. 2. A
commentary on the universe and human destiny. 3. Thoughts
about God and Nature. III. Characters B. The protagonist in
this book is Ishmael, a Christian, schoolteacher and
part-time sailor. Ishmael's role in the hunt for "Moby Dick"
is to interpret what is happening. He discusses his reasons
for going to sea and interprets and looks for understanding a
number of reasons for any specific action where other
characters only understand one reason. C. It is hard to say
what changes take place in Ishmael's personality, since he is
the narrator he doesn't talk about himself, he only talks
about what he sees. D1. Ishmael befriends Queequeg who is
a cannibal. Even though Queequeg is very ugly Ishmael sees
that Queequeg has an honest heart, great honor, and a lot of
courage. This friendship had a positive influence on
Ishmael's behavior because it taught him not to judge on
outward appearances. E2. Another relationship that was
very short was the relationship between Ishmael and Captain
Ahab. For the first few days aboard the Pequod Ishmael
always saw Ahab in the shadows. When Ishmael finally saw
Ahab he had shivers run through his body. Ishmael felt
Ahab's attitude of determination, dedication and hatred
towards "Moby Dick" in Ahab's appearance. This
relationship was a negative relationship because Ishmael
now feared Ahab and did not want to become friends with
such an evil person. F. The conflict that Ishmael experienced
was that he saw how Ahab was such an evil man and that
Ishmael was a good natured man and did not want to be
corrupted by Ahab. To resolve this conflict Ishmael stayed
away from Ahab. Representative Passage on Imagery and
Figurative Language "Yonder, by the ever-brimming
goblet's rim, the warm waves blush like wine. The gold
brow plumbs the blue. The diver sun—long dived from
noon,—goes down; my soul mounts up! she wearies with
her endless hill. Is, then, the crown too heavy that I wear?
this Iron Crown of Lombardy. Yet is it bright with many a
gem; I, the wearer, see not its far flashings; but darkly fell
that I wear that, that dazzlingly confounds. ‘Tis iron—that I
know—not gold. ‘Tis split, too—that I feel; the jagged edge
galls me so, my brain seems to beat against the solid metal."
Chapter LV A. The details being used to make us feel like
we are watching a sunset is that it says "the warm waves
blush like wine. The gold brow plumbs the blue. The diver
sun—long dived from noon,—goes down; my soul mounts
up!" B. The similes the author uses are the comparison of
the colored waves of the sunset to wine. I believe that when
the author is talking about the "Iron Crown of Lombardy" he
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