This chapter offers a reading of Herman Melville's novel Moby-Dick. It highlights the repetition of Melville's move from literal lines to figurative and from a visible to an invisible pencil in extreme terms in this novel. It discusses an interpretation of the novel as a conflict not essentially between Ahab and the white whale, but between Ahab and Ishmael, with Ahab representing totalitarianism and Ishmael representing a type of American democracy.
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