Moby-Dick discussion questions Chapter 36 “The Quarter-Deck”

  • This is the first of several chapters presented in dramatic (play-like) style. What does Melville accomplish by changing this way?
  • How does Ahab motivate the sailors? What are his tactics?
  • What things does Ahab say that make you realize he’s not really just chasing a whale? In other words, cite some clues that Moby-Dick is more than a mere animal in Ahab’s eyes.
  • What are your sentiments toward Starbuck when he speaks up against Ahab? How does Ahab get Starbuck to back down? Find the passage in a previous chapter that foreshadows this.
  • In what ways is the ceremony at the end of the chapter quasi-religious? How would Bildad and Peleg have reacted to it? Why?
Asked on 02.06.2017 in English Literature.
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