Chapter 14: Nantucket

Ah! That new blog smell, never does get old, does it. Yesterday, I spent my afternoon moving everything over here from tumblr, at least those things that were worth moving. The thousands upon thousands of reblogs will have to stay put upon that sinking ship of a website.

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So, let us get right back to it, with a very fun non-narrative chapter of Moby-Dick; or, the Whale!

Continue reading “Chapter 14: Nantucket”

Chapter 13: Wheelbarrow

Today we’ve got another nice little chunk of narrative, after those low-key backstory and religious chapters. But, it also finds plenty of time for fun little asides and bits of philosophy here and there, so it ends up being quite long.

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I’m trying to get out of the mode of going through the whole chapter point by point. There’s just too much in this book, and its very existence warns against that kind of close analysis as a sisyphean task. So, I will try to restrict myself to the points and observations I find most interesting. Continue reading “Chapter 13: Wheelbarrow”

Chapter 12: Biographical

With this chapter, we briefly move back into one of Melville’s more comfortable, more popular subjects: The south seas, which is to say the islands of the southern Pacific ocean.

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As I mentioned before, this chapter isn’t an exact transcript of what Queequeg told Ishmael that night, but rather a sort of reconstructed narrative based on that, information later gleaned from Queequeg, and from other miscellaneous individuals who knew of the story. Continue reading “Chapter 12: Biographical”

Chapter 10: A Bosom Friend

Now that we’ve got church out of the way, it’s time to get real chummy with some dudes just bein’ bros. Just a real couple o’ old pals, pallin’ around! That’s it and that’s all, certainly no subtext here, no sirree.

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These next few chapters make an interesting counterpoint to the harsh, literally sermonizing tone of the last little run. It’s a nice change of pace. Continue reading “Chapter 10: A Bosom Friend”

Chapter 8: The Pulpit

Let us continue the Theology lessons, here in this, the most churchy run of chapters in Moby-Dick; or, the Whale.

A Sermon from the High Pulpit: The Chancel Behind 1827 by Joseph Mallord William Turner 1775-1851

This chapter contains some real meat in that particular vein, as well as appealing to a particular style of Christian aesthetic that I enjoy a great deal. After the doubts raised in The Chapel, it’s time to get a little more sincere, as the chaplain finally makes his appearance.

Continue reading “Chapter 8: The Pulpit”

Chapter 7: The Chapel

Let’s move on to some capital-T Theology in this next run of chapters in Moby-Dick; or, the Whale! I’ll say ahead of time that I am, at best, an amateur theologian, having taken only a few classes on the subject in college, and none of them even remotely relating to 19th century Christianity.

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But, having been raised in a denomination that encourages scholarship of the Bible, following @benito-cereno for many years on this site, and listening to his wonderful podcast @apocrypals, I know a thing or three about the following of ol’ Oily Josh.

Continue reading “Chapter 7: The Chapel”

Chapter 6: The Street

What’s this? Two in one day? Sure, why not. Let’s knock another one down!

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This chapter is another short one, I actually fit the notes for it and the last one on the same page. It does have a bit more meat for us to chew on, though, in terms of blog writing. I probably won’t have to go off on a Melville-esque digression of my own to get to a decent length this time. Continue reading “Chapter 6: The Street”

Chapter 5: Breakfast

Well, I had a little break over the holiday season, did a little dog-sitting, but now it is time to get back to it!

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The next couple chapters are pretty short, only a scant few pages of material. But that’s good, as it allows me to prepare myself for the following chapters, where we’ll have to really delve deep into capital-t Theology in the Chapel and the Sermon. But for now, light situational comedy with Ishmael and co. Continue reading “Chapter 5: Breakfast”