I admit it. I have never in my life read the classic American novel Moby Dick. And, one of my univeristy majors is English.
(My college took the unspoken approach that American literature is an appendage of British literature. The United States is 200 years old whereas British literature dates back more than 1,000 years. Just ask Hrothgar, Wealtheow and the rest of the Beowulf bunch. So, we spent most of our time on British literature.)
Moby Dick is a about a whaling ship sailing from Massachusetts in the middle 1800s. I've only read a few chapers so far, but here are my observations.
Is Ishmael gay? He sure seems to like sleeping in the same bed with Queequeg the cannibal harpooner.
Working on whaling ships seemed to be a very equal-opportunity career in those days. The American Indians and Africans made as much money or more than the white American sailors.
It's a wonder there weren't more mutinies. Surely there's a better way to motivate sailors to work hard than kicking them in the ass.