Reader's & Writer's Notebook: Prompt Response
As you prepare to respond to a prompt, review your Reader's & Writer's Notebook as well as both the text which is the focus of your prompt. When writing your response, give yourself persmission to let your thoughts wander - explore your thinkig- letting one idea lead to the next. If you find yourself drifting too far from the focus of the prompt, start a new sentence to refocus your thoughts around the prompt. DO NOT focus on summary.
Entry Date: September 5, 2017
Prompt: Explore your thinking related to at least one aspect of your current text that is giving you something to ponder or wonder about. Follow your ideas, wherever they lead. See if you can fill approximately 10 lines or more.
Before I started reading Moby Dick, I checked out this link and listened to the whales: http://www.cetaceanresearch.com . I know this book is about whaling and I hope it's not too bloody. I wonder if Melville shows any respect at all for the whale or does he treat whales as commercial goods - items to be sent to market?
I’m also wondering about Ishmael. He seems so alone and afraid. Why is he so intent on heading out on this whaling voyage? Also, so many of the inns in New Bedford have creepy names and don't look like safe places to spend the night. To make it even worse, the inn Ishmael finally settles on is run by a man named Peter Coffin. Not very subtle. Is Melville foreshadowing here or just trying to crack a joke?
I wonder if whales were always hunted in the way Melville describes and how many whaling men died on the job. What was the role of New Bedford whaling industry in the US and world economy? Which countries still practice whaling? Why did ours stop? Was whaling ended because of moral/ethical reasons or were the reasons purely economic?