Since the Moby Dick class ended in late December, I’ve been deciding whether I met my goals in rereading Moby Dick.  Did I gain a greater appreciation of this novel of novels?  Did I retrain myself to read instead of browse? The answer to the second question, sadly, is no. A lifetime of  reading and a semi lifetime of staring at a computer screen wears out your eyes. But possibly if my answer to question one had been an enthusiastic yes instead of sort, this answer would have been different too.

Reading two gave me more pleasure because I appreciated the wildness and poetry of Melville’s prose.  Melville and David Foster Wallace would have had a good time hanging out. But I was still bored with the chapters on eery part of the whale’s anatomy, and I didn’t get Melville’s sense of humor. The ultimate bottom line may be that you have to have sailed to enjoy Moby Dick, and I haven’t [well twice].

Oh well, on to another unread classic.

PS-My two unanswered Moby Dick questions

  • Is there a sequel and Moby Dick gets killed [Moby Dick 2]?
  • Why did Ishmael survive other than the need for someone to be a narrator?

 

 

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