Character Analysis In Moby Dick
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When writing a character analysis, you will want to first define who the major characters of the novel are. In Moby Dick, the two dominant human characters are:
- Captain Ahab
Research on Captain Ahab
Ahab is the captain of the Pequod and should be a main focus on any character analysis that comprises your research paper. Previously maimed in an encounter with Moby Dick, he is obsessed with killing the whale. Ahab's lost leg is replaced by whale bone and Ahab's splintering of the leg after a confrontation with another ship captain symbolizes Ahab's decline into insanity. Like King Ahab the biblical character, Captain Ahab wants something he cannot have and dies as a result of his desires.
Research on Ishmael - Character
Research on Ishmael will reveal that Ishmael is the story's narrator. He is an emotional and intelligent young man. Like Ahab, Ishmael has a biblical counterpart, the son of Abraham and Hagar who was exiled after Abraham's wife Sarah bore a son, Isaac. Similarly, Melville's Ishmael is associated with isolation and exile. These negative feelings led Ishmael to join Ahab's crew. The biblical Ishmael was protected by God and enjoyed life as a powerful patriarch. In Moby Dick, Ishmael enjoyed a divine intervention of sorts by being the only crew member to survive the final confrontation with the whale.
The whale Moby Dick is also an important character. While he only appears in a few of the book's novels, his behaviors provide the primary motivation behind the actions of the human characters. Moby Dick is a symbol for God. Like God, he is unknowable and unpredictable. Attempts by human beings to control or understand him ultimately lead to failure and ruin.
Research paper on the Character Analysis in Moby Dick
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