Billy Budd | Critical Essay by Phil Withim

This literature criticism consists of approximately 23 pages of analysis & critique of Billy Budd.
This section contains 6,602 words
(approx. 23 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Phil Withim

Critical Essay by Phil Withim

SOURCE: “Billy Budd: Testament of Resistance,” in Modern Language Quarterly, Vol. 20, No. 2, June, 1959, pp. 115–27.

In the following essay, Withim rejects the theory of Billy Budd as a testament of Melville's acceptance of evil, instead perceiving the story as an ironic narrative.

When E. L. G. Watson wrote his famous article, “Melville's Testament of Acceptance,” he made no attempt to prove his view. All he attempted, all he achieved, was to suggest a way of looking at the story. “Melville,” said Watson, “is no longer a rebel.”1 He has come to accept the presence of evil, and he has ceased to blame God for its existence. Other critics began to write on Billy Budd in the same vein. Their positions varied somewhat, but the...

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This section contains 6,602 words
(approx. 23 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Phil Withim
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