What are Starbuck's misgivings about Ahab's pursuit of the great white whale?  

1 Answer | Add Yours

rrteacher's profile pic

rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Starbuck is cast as the reasonable and good influence on Ahab, with Fedallah representing evil. It is, in large part, Fedallah's predictions which embolden Ahab to go off in pursuit of Moby Dick, in particular his prophecy that the captain cannot die except by rope, and then only after he has seen two hearses on the sea. Starbuck is a Christian man, extremely righteous, and is troubled by what he sees as Ahab's demonic obsession with the white whale. He is convinced that it will bring about their destruction, and tries to convince the captain of the foolhardiness of seeking revenge against a "dumb brute." When the Pequod arrives at the latitude where he was last spotted, he urges the captain to "fly these deadly waters."  He even contemplates murdering Ahab at one point, but ultimately trusts in God to dissuade the captain.


We’ve answered 317,489 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question