Moy Dick: The Chapter Structure Of Moby Dick

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According to critic Walter Bezanson, the chapter structure can be divided into "chapter sequences," "chapter clusters," and "balancing chapters". The simplest sequences are of narrative progression, then sequences of theme such as the three chapters on whale painting, and sequences of structural similarity, such as the five dramatic chapters beginning with "The Quarter-Deck" or the four chapters beginning with "The Candles". Chapter clusters are the chapters on the significance of the colour white, and those on the meaning of fire. Balancing chapters are chapters of opposites, such as "Loomings" versus the "Epilogue," or similars, such as "The Quarter-Deck" and "The Candles".[9] Scholar Lawrence Buell describes the arrangement of the non-narrative chapters as structured around three patterns: first, the nine meetings of the Pequod with ships that have encountered Moby Dick. Each has been more and more severely damaged, foreshadowing the Pequod 's own fate. Second, the increasingly impressive encounters with whales. In the early encounters, the whaleboats hardly make contact; later there are false alarms and routine chases; finally, the massive assembling of whales at the edges of the China Sea in "The Grand Armada". A typhoon near Japan sets the stage for Ahab 's confrontation with Moby Dick. The third pattern is the cetological documentation, so lavish that it can be divided into two subpatterns. These chapters start with the ancient history of whaling and a

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