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Title:Moby Dick; or, The Whale (Great Books of the Western World, #48)
Format Type:Ebook
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Publisher:William Benton
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Number of Pages:420
Category:Classics, Fiction, Literature, Adventure

Moby Dick; or, The Whale (Great Books of the Western World, #48) by Herman Melville, Robert Maynard Hutchins

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Billy Budd, Sailor, Billy Budd and Other Stories, Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life, Bartleby the Scrivener, Pierre: or, the Ambiguities, Moby-Dick or, The Whale, Bartleby and Benito Cereno, Redburn, White-Jacket, Moby-Dick, The Confidence-Man, Benito Cereno
b What has cast such a shadow upon you br The Negro b br br With its intense mix of mystery adventure and a surprise ending i Benito Cereno i at first seems merely a provocative example from the genre Herman Melville created with his early best selling novels of the sea However most Melville scholars consider it his most sophisticated work and many such as novelist Ralph Ellison have hailed it as the most piercing look at slavery in all of American literature br br Based on a real life incident the character names remain unchanged i Benito Cereno i tells what happens when an American merchant ship comes upon a mysterious Spanish ship where the nearly all black crew and their white captain are starving and yet hostile to offers of help Melville s most focused political work it is rife with allusions a ship named after Santo Domingo site of the slave revolt led by Toussaint L Ouverture analogies does the good hearted yet obtuse American captain refer to the American character itself and mirroring images that deepen our reflections on human oppression and its resultant depravities br br It is in short a multi layered masterpiece that rewards repeated readings and deepens our appreciation of Melville s genius, b i Call me Ishmael i b br br So begins Herman Melville s masterpiece one of the greatest works of imagination in literary history As Ishmael is drawn into Captain Ahab s obsessive quest to slay the white whale Moby Dick he finds himself engaged in a metaphysical struggle between good and evil More than just a novel of adventure more than an paean to whaling lore and legend i Moby Dick i is a haunting social commentary populated by some of the most enduring characters in literature the crew of the Pequod from stern Quaker First Mate Starbuck to the tattooed Polynesian harpooner Queequeg are a vision of the world in microcosm the pinnacle of Melville s lifelong meditation on America Written with wonderfully redemptive humour i Moby Dick i is a profound poetic inquiry into character faith and the nature of perception br br Based on the Northwestern University Press edition this Penguin Classics edition includes a critical introduction by Andrew Delbanco as well as valuable explanatory notes maps illustrations and a glossary of nautical terms br br Herman Melville is now regarded as one of America s greatest novelists Much of the material for his novels was drawn from his own experience as a seaman aboard whaling ships He wrote his masterpiece i Moby Dick i in and died in, i Tales of compelling power by one of America s greatest writers i br br Stung by the critical reception and lack of commercial success of his previous two works i Moby Dick i and i Pierre i Herman Melville became obsessed with the difficulties of communicating his vision to readers His sense of isolation lies at the heart of these later works Billy Budd Sailor a classic confrontation between good and evil is the story of an innocent young man unable to defend himself against a wrongful accusation The other selections here Bartleby The Encantadas Benito Cereno and The Piazza also illuminate in varying guises the way fictions are created and shared with a wider society br br In his introduction Frederick Busch discusses Melville s preoccupation with his correspondence with the world his quarrel with silence and why fiction was for Melville a matter of life and death br br Bartleby br The piazza br The Encantadas br The bell tower br Benito Cereno br The paradise of bachelors and the tartarus of maids br Billy Budd sailor, Academics hail it as the beginning of modernism but to readers around the world even those daunted by i Moby Dick Bartleby the Scrivener i is simply one of the most absorbing and moving novellas ever Set in the mid th century on New York City s Wall Street it was also perhaps Herman Melville s most prescient story what if a young man caught up in the rat race of commerce finally just said I would prefer not to br br The tale is one of the final works of fiction published by Melville before slipping into despair over the continuing critical dismissal of his work after Moby Dick he abandoned publishing fiction The work is presented here exactly as it was originally published in Putnam s magazine to sadly critical disdain