Listen now | In this week’s readings, Moby-Dick um…. suddenly became a play? We had Shakespearean soliloquies from Ahab, Starbuck, and Stubb (I guess Flask, who, in addition to not getting to butter his bread, won’t be getting his own soliloquy either). Then we get a full-on scripted scene—stage directions and all—featuring the harpooners and crew. We get Moby Dick himself’s villanous back story and then we get this chapter
I think Sadie had a really good point about the terror/sublime juxtaposition. I really like the footnotes and how they have that same thing going on with the comparison of the shark and the albatross. To me it kind of seemed like you could also apply this chapter to yourself or to human nature? So the highs and lows of living, which Ishmael hints at at the beginning of the book as well.
This week's set of chapters, as mentioned, are a very odd departure into an entirely different, Shakespeare-esque style.
I think my favorite of the soliloquies is Starbuck's and my favorite line from it is "Hark! the infernal orgies! that revelry is forward! mark the unfaltering silence aft!"
Then on to the chapter called Moby Dick where we're back with Ish, my favorite part there is "For not only do fabulous rumors naturally grow out of the very body of all surprising terrible events,—as the smitten tree gives birth to its fungi; but, in maritime life, far more than in that of terra firma, wild rumors abound, wherever there is any adequate reality for them to cling to." - particularly the phrase "as the smitten tree"- not sure why, exactly.
Poor butterless Flask, who alone of the officers doesn't get his own soliloquy, is also called out for his "pervading mediocrity" which seems unnecessarily harsh on the poor guy.
Then in the final chapter, we have some of my favorite footnotes. The one that starts with "I remember the first albatross I ever saw" reminded me of the "A moose once bit my sister" part of the Monty Python and the Holy Grail credits - did anyone else think of that or was it just me?