In the Heart of the Sea

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In the Heart of the Sea
Jason Barker

In the novel “In the heart of the Sea” Nathaniel Philbrick introduces the reader to Nantucket Island located in the east coast. He establishes the importance of the whaling industry in relation to the island. Philbrick does an incredible job of telling the story of 20 regular men doing their jobs whaling. They set sail on a renewed ship called the Essex. The Essex took a beating from a storm before it finally met its match an angered sperm whale. The whale rammed the ship to the point beyond repair. It forced the whalers to put what they can on to the smaller whaler boats. Surviving at sea with limited resources the sailed until they were completely out of everything. The men resorted to the ultimate ultimatum of either accepting death or eating their dead crewmembers. Philbrick does an amazing job of opening our minds to the near death situation the crewmen were forced to face. “Even if Nantucket's Quakers dominated the island economically and culturally, room was made for others, and by the early ninteenth century there were two congregational church towers bracketing the town north and south. Yet all Shared in a common, spiritually infused mission- to maintain a peaceful life on land while using raising blood havoc at sea” Chapter 1, Pg. 9 .The Nantucket Isalnd was a very close community who shared a common interest. Mostly inhabited by Quakers, they split the community into commoners and outsiders. Even outsiders that were whalers would be treated with a common respect, this illustrates the importance of the industry to the community. Quakers were Pacifist, "Nantucketers saw no contradiction between their livelihood and their religion. God Himself had granted them dominion over the fishes of the sea." Chapter 1, pg. 9. The city of Nantucket depended on the hard work and dedication of the whalers. Whalers were only men and were easily away from home for two or three years. Women were expected to raise their kids by...
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