From Jim Gilliam's blog archives
Brink Lindsey on Moby Dick

April 10, 2002 5:38 PM

Brink Lindsey on Moby Dick:

Both of the main characters in Moby Dick, the narrator Ishmael and Captain Ahab, share that searching, striving restlessness that is perhaps the defining characteristic of the modern spirit.

Ahab, it seems to me, foreshadows the totalitarian temptation that was to blight the century that followed and which still survives to menace us. Disoriented in the uncertain flux of a world at sea -- a modern world in which age-old verities have melted away -- many lost souls have craved return to solid ground. In the 20th century, people thought they had found that solid ground in the historical destiny of a class or a Volk. Today others claim that it consists of a rabid and politicized Islam.

All of them follow Ahab to their ruin.

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Brink Lindsey on Moby Dick (04.10.2002)

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