Monomania, as specified by the American Heritage Dictionary, is the pathological fascination with one topic or concept. In Herman Melville’s novel Moby Dick, a fascination causes monomania in its main character. Through his actions, words, thoughts, and what others think of him, Captain Ahab is genuinely monomaniacal.
Ahab is monomaniacal through his words and ideas. “Talk not to me of blasphemy, guy; I ‘d strike the sun if it insulted me.” This reveals Ahab’s madness since only he would have the nerve to state that no matter who it is, fantastic or small, he would withstand them; this includes Moby Penis.
Ahab frequently smokes a pipe, but he understands something and states “What business have I with this pipe? This thing that is implied for sereneness, to send up mild white vapors amongst moderate white hairs, not amongst torn iron-grey locks like mine. I’ll smoke no more.” He confesses that he is not a tranquil guy, which is quite monomaniacal. Another occasion that shows Ahab’s monomania is when he talks directly to a dead whale’s head, stating “
Speak, thou large and venerable head, magnificent head and tell us the secret thing that remains in thee … O head! thou hast seen sufficient to divide the worlds and make an infidel of Abraham, and not one syllable is thine!” His obsession leads him to even say that he will pay somebody to kill Moby Cock just for the sake of revenge. “Whosoever of ye raises me that very same white whale, he will have this gold ounce, my young boys!” When Ahab finally meets Moby Dick, his monomania strikes its high point as his last words before his death are “Sink all coffins and hearses to one common pool! And considering that neither can be mine, let me then tow to pieces, while still chasing thee, though tied to thee, thou damned whale! Therefore, I give up the spear!”
Captain Ahab is not only monomaniacal through his words, but through his actions, likewise. In one event, Ahab holds Starbuck at gunpoint just because he asked if he could have a team of guys repair a leakage. Is that not an action of a madman? Ahab likewise breaks the ship’s compass at one point in the story so that the team discovers how the ship relocations. He also refuses to recognize the cautions that exist during gams; he dismisses them with no idea or doubt because his fixation makes him blind to the reality and stupidity of the search for Moby Cock. Ahab likewise has no regard for his fellow sailors, as he has controlled them on a regular basis. Everybody on the Pequod, especially Ishmael, thought that they were going on a normal whaling trip, not a self-destructive chase for a deadly white whale.
If somebody is to be called monomaniacal, not only one perspective can validate that. The thoughts of fellows team members on the Pequod typically discuss how they feel about Ahab. Ishmael explains Ahab as being “A grand, ungodly, god-like man, Captain Ahab; does not speak much; Ahab’s remained in colleges, in addition to amongst the cannibals; been used to much deeper wonders than the waves; fixed his intense lance in mightier, complete stranger foes than whales.” Queeqeug offers his 2 cents worth when he states “
More than as soon as did he presented the faint blossom of an appearance, which, in any other man, would have quickly flowered out in a smile.” Undoubtedly, Ahab did not like to smile, which is something that pleased people do. Lastly, Stubb remarks that “The sea had jeeringly kept his limited body up, but drowned the infinite of his soul.” He says that Ahab has actually wasted his soul in pursuit of Moby Penis, which if it was not for the sea and the white whale, Ahab would not be monomaniacal.
Ahab is monomaniacal through what he states, what he does, and what other think about him. He not just manipulates his fellow sailors, he likewise imitates a madman due to the fact that of his fixation with the pursuit of Moby Dick. Captain Ahab is relatively monomaniacal regardless of what he thinks about himself.