An Analysis of Herman Melville and Moby Dick

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An Analysis of Herman Melville and Moby Dick

"Moby Dick is biographic of Melville in the sense that it discloses

every nook and cranny of his imagination." (Humford 41) This paper is a

psychological study of Moby Dick. Moby Dick was written out of Melville's

personal experiences.

Moby Dick is a story of the adventures a person named Ishmael. Ishmael

is a lonely, alienated individual who wants to see the "watery part of the

world." Moby Dick begins with the main character, Ishmael, introducing himself

with the line "Call Me Ishmael." (Melville 1) Ishmael tells the reader about

his background and creates a depressed mood for the reader. Call me Ishmael.

"Some years ago-nevermind how long precisely- having little or no money in my

purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail

about a little and see the watery part of the world." (Melville 1) Ishmael

tells the reader about his journeys through various towns such as New Bedford,

Nankantuket. Eventually while in Nankantuket, Ishmael signed up for a whaling

voyage on the Pequod. The Pequod was the whaling boat Ishmael sailed on where

such characters as Queequeq, Starbuck, and the captain of the ship, Ahab, all

journeyed together.

Not long once at sea, the captain of the ship, Ahab reveals his plan to

hunt down a white whale named Moby Dick. Ahab was veteran sailor, a man that had

a heart of stone. Ahab had a personal grudge against Moby Dick. Moby Dick was

responsible for taking off Ahab's leg in a previous voyage. Ahab's plan was

essentially an unauthorized takeover, what the whaling company had not in mind.

Ahab was very irrational and ludicrous; his plan seals the fate for himself and

the crew of the Pequod. In the tragic ending of Moby Dick, all of the

characters die except for Ishmael. Ishmael survived Moby Dick's attack of the

ship with the help of a coffin that his close friend Queequeq built. Ishmael of

Moby Dick was a special character because he closely relates to the author's

own life. There are many symbolism's between Ishmael of Moby Dick and Herman

Melville's own life. The name Ishmael can be traced back to the Bible.

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