Sunday, February 20, 2011

Billy Budd and The Encantadas

The merchant sailor,Billy Budd,is inspected and enlisted for naval service on the Bellipotent.Although his civillian captain is not happy to see him go,he has to release him to the navy.Billy is a wonderful sailor.All the sailors like him for his charming looks and honest simple pesonality.He waves good-bye to his shipmates as he is taken aboard his new ship.
Billy does well in his new surroundings.The other sailors like him as much as he was liked on the merchant vessel.He works in the topsails and makes fast friends with companions and a veteran sailor,referred to as the Dansker.
The captain of the ship is Fairfax Vere.Captain Vere is a very stern man.He is well-read and educated and he speaks often in historical allusions.Many find him to be less than personable and he is not popular with the sailors,although he is respected.
There is a new master-at-arms on the ship and his name is John Claggart.The job of the master-at-arms has turned into policing his own crew.He is primarily responsible for watching over the men.In recent months there have been mutinies on British ships,so the officers are ill-at-ease.Claggart's job is more difficult as a result of this.
One of the corporals tell Claggart that Billy Budd was ridiculing him.Claggart takes offense at this lie and begins to watch Billy carefully,counterfeiting pleasant hellos.When Billy finds out from the veteran sailor that Claggarts doesn't like him,he doesn't believe it.
After the pursuit of an enemy ship,Claggart goes to Captain Vere and tells him that he thinks one of the men is dangerous,liable to mutiny.When he tells him that he means Billy Bud,the captain doesn't believe him.He takes Billy and Claggart into a room and makes Claggart accuse Billy to his face.Billy is stunned by the accusation and when pressured to talk,he punches Claggart in the forehead.This punch hit just right and kills the master-at-arms.
Captain Vere is  at first confused,but he calls a court of other officers to review the crime and set a sentence.Although some of them feel that Billy unintionally commited a crime,Captain Vere maintains that on a warship a murder is a murder regardless of intention.They convict Billy and sentence him to hang at down.
At dawn,all the men assemble and Billy is hung by the main mast.the sunrises on his body framed by the mast and the yardarm.Some men think that he seemed to die before the noose tightened.Although an official report stated that Billy stabbed Claggart after he was rightly accused,the truth of his excution lived on in a ballad sung by sailors all over the world.

New words
-A large rings made of wood,metal and plastic.
-formal an amount of money paid regularly to someone,especially a priest,as a salary or as money to live on.
-shining in the dark
-weather that is unpleasantly hot with no movement of air

Moral value of the novel
1)Billy's morality is simple and honest
-Billy does not struggle with the noval officer enlisting him,because this is his duty,Althought he might not want to go into the navy,he goes anyway and he tries to do well once he gets there.
2)Captain Vere is an intellectual;he is also mistaken for a gentleman
-His ideas of morality and right and wrong are heavily.
I found that this novel is very tragedic and quite interesting to be read among english novels reader.It is because the novel,as superb tragedy must,ends on a calm and satisfying note.The tragic hero is a superior being whose martyrdom elevates him even further.He is not perfect;he possesses the flaw which contributes to his fate.(At times of intense emotion,he is unable to speak;therefore,he retorts to Claggartwith his fist.)The Encantadas,or Enchanted Isles,a book of ten sketches-all laid in the lonely Galapagos Islands off the coast of Eucador-represents Herman Merville at his highest point of achievement as a writer.First published in The Piazza Tales,each sketch is a gem by itself.Compassion and wit mingle with anger as Melville presents his two major themes-the power of evil and man in isolation.

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