I say, Herman Melvilleand you say
First, he restricts the action to a few disconnected portions of the ship. This separation is more pronounced at sea when the ship withdraws from the fleet.
Such spatial limitations magnify the forces of good and evil and limit the characters of the story in their interaction with society as a whole. Melville tells the story by means of a shadowy first-person narrator.
His identity is never revealed, his character never developed, nor is this necessary, for Melville may have intended himself to be thought of as the omniscient observer. If so, it is Melville, the complex artist working with imaginative material, and not Melville the man, who speaks alternately as witness and commentator on events.
The author shifts point of view by looking now into one character's mind, then into another's, by making general comments from time to time, by presenting scenes of dramatic action, and, when necessary, by shutting himself and the reader off from the scene, such as in the intensely dramatic meeting of Captain Vere with Billy to inform the latter of his condemnation.
Following the preface, which informs the reader that the year is twenty-two years before Melville's birththe opening chapter records the speaker's observation of an African, whose description loosely parallels Melville's of Billy, the Handsome Sailor.
The unnamed dark-skinned man suggests a black yin to Billy's white yang and serves as an ominous foreshadowing of the dark deed which leads to the deaths of two major characters. At the beginning of Chapter 4, the speaker excuses himself for digressing. Then, after peripheral commentary of historical significance concerning the life of Nelson, he returns to his "main road.
He appends three chapters to further influence the reader's opinion of the three principals, thereby raising Billy to the level of legend and, at the same time, calling into question the way in which society twists the truth about the simple martyr, just as seaweed twines around the jettisoned corpse.Critical Essays Purpose of Billy Budd Bookmark this page Manage My Reading List On the surface, this is a straightforward horizontal novel in that it takes a rather straightforward path in time from the beginning to the end.
What happens to Billy after this? Well, you will have to read the book to find out. The story is a more challenging nineteenth century American story, but it is well worth the efforts you put in to it.
¿Billy Budd¿ is a very good book, one that you can read more than once and still find something new each time/5(20). Billy Budd is a tough read, but well worth it. The ethical and moral issues it presents are thought provoking and challenging.
The characters are symbols rather than flesh and blood but their dilemmas are real/5(). A concise biography of Herman Melville plus historical and literary context for Billy Budd. Billy Budd: Plot Summary A quick-reference summary: Billy Budd on a single page.
Benjamin Britten’s Billy Budd will be performed in Norway for the very first time! This is an opera set in a hard masculine environment, about repressed passions and the weight of guilt - but also about rebellion, the power of beauty and about release.
Introduction, Melville's Life, A Note On The Background Of Billy Budd, & A Brief Summary PLEASE NOTE: Although the following notes refer to the superseded original publication of Melville's novel (sometimes entitled.