Billy Budd - Study Guide Chapter 20 Summary & Analysis

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Chapter 20 Summary

The surgeon has misgivings about the way the captain is handling the incidents. He feels that what should be done is to follow standard procedure: keep Budd in confinement until they can rejoin the squadron and refer the case to the admiral. He feels that the captain is not himself, but he knows that to argue would be insolence and to resist would be mutiny. So he does what he is told; the other officers share his surprise and concern. They all feel that it is a matter that should be referred to the admiral.

Chapter 20 Analysis

At one time, Melville was a very good friend of Nathaniel Hawthorne. Much of Hawthorne's work dealt with community attitudes about sin and evil as in his most famous novel, The Scarlet Letter. Melville shared many of his views regarding organized religion, particularly the Calvinism of their day. He felt...

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This section contains 413 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Billy Budd Study Guide
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Billy Budd from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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