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Moby Dick, or the Whale

By: Herman Melville

Few things, even in literature, can really be said to be unique — but Moby Dick is truly unlike anything written before or since. The novel is nominally about the obsessive hunt by the crazed Captain Ahab of the book’s eponymous white whale. But interspersed in that story are digressions, paradoxes, philosophical riffs on whaling and life, and a display of techniques so advanced for its time that some have referred to the 1851 Moby Dick as the first “modern” novel. (Summary by Stewart Wills)

As an example of the Great American Novel, Moby Dick is unrivaled in its structure, language and style. Melville amalgamates a fabulous mix of Biblical, Shakespearean and mythical elements along with wonderful seafaring atmosphere sourced from his own nautical experiences on board whaling schooners. Whaling stories from contemporary sources in Nantucket's local grapevine was another rich fountainhead of material.

Book Details

Language

English

Original Language

English

Published In

1851

Author

Herman Melville

United States

Melville's growing literary ambition showed in Moby-Dick (1851), which took nearly a year and a half to write, but it did not find an audience and critics scorned his psychological novel Pierre: or, T...

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