Characters: Ishmael, Captain Ahab, Queequeg, Moby Dick
Ishmael is an eighteen or nineteen year-old American kid living in the 1860’s. He is coming on the whaling voyage thinking that is going to be the best one yet. He is the one telling the story. He meets a harpooner named Queequeg at the Spouter-Inn. They become the best of friends and embark on the Pequod. When Ishmael decides to take a whaling voyage, one of his reasons is that he wants to see the world.
Captain Ahab is the best whaling captain in Nantucket and acting commander of the Pequod. Ahab has spent forty years working up the ladder in the whaling industry. He married a young woman in about his fifties. He has a child that he has never met. Like if his life wasn’t that messed up enough, prior to the novel he had his leg bitten off by the white whale, Moby Dick. Ironically, his peg leg is made out of whalebone. After his tragedy, he gets back in business and becomes madly obsessed with Moby Dick. He blames everything that has ever been negative in his life on the White Whale. He plots to exact is revenge after the ship was unable to turn back and forces his crew to swear that they will aid him on his revenge. Obviously, the main conflict revolves around Captain Ahab and Moby Dick.
Queequeg is the son of a fictional king in the South Sea Islands. Queequeg is desperate to find out how it is to be normal. Queequeg has been sailing on different ships, with people who think he’s weird because of his religion, tattoos, and his language. Moby Dick is the infamous white whale that the book revolves around. The author uses this as symbolism for each of the main characters. For Ishmael, the whale is a legend with many rumors and superstitions preceding him. To Captain Ahab, the White Whale is the cause and aim for all his grief. There’s only one lesson Moby Dick himself is trying to teach all those hunters on whaling ships, and that’s simple: Leave me alone. Don’t bother me