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The Quarter Deck Analysis Transcendentalism is a philosophy that emphasizes conditions of knowledge through experience also the philosophy of truth and respect for nature and the inner spirit Thoreau and Emerson are the two most influential writers of transcendentalist movement Anti-transcendentalism is transposed in Ahab of Herman Melvilles novel Moby-Dick Ahab is an extremely obsessive person He is obsessive about his own power and supremacy over both mankind and nature Ahab displays overzealous obsession when he says Aye Aye And Ill chase him round Good hope and round the horn and round the Norway maelstrom and round perditions flames before I give him up Page 317 This direct quote exhibits Ahabs obsession for capturing Moby-Dick which often overwhelms his rationalizing thought process His ideals of right vs wrong and good vs evil become secondary to the capture and slaughter of his Great White Whale He interprets the great white whales purpose of existence to be a pathway to glory through the slaughter of it This ideal is contrary to Gods purpose of creating Moby-Dick He intended the great white whale to be a symbol of his and natures power majesty supremacy and unconquerability God and natures power is a supernatural force whereas God gave Moby-Dick physical power and therefore supremacy over the seas Many transcendentalists romanticists and intellectuals have already recognized analyzed and have been inspired by many of the characteristics of God and nature would find the same glory in Moby-Dick Gods Great White Whale Aha also obsesses over the display of his power and supremacy over his crew He says Whos over me Truth hath no confines Take off thine eye my heat has melted thee to anger Page 317 Ahabs innate reaction to Starbucks verbal attack is to reassert himself as master and demoralize Starbuck through the rhetoric he uses as justification for his position as leader Ahab shows that he is very insecure and needs to reassure himself through
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