Herman Melville is an American literary icon best known for his novel Moby Dick His diverse writing style demonstrates his interest in works that match the Gothic, romantic, and modernist aesthetic. Melville’s style is complicated yet effective as he tackles a variety of themes that still capture the attention of readers today. He has become a literary staple, with his works often inspiring intense discussion and essay topics.
The following are five of the best essay topics inspired by the works of Herman Melville.
1. Exploring the Themes of Representation in Melville’s Works: Melville’s works often contain characters who stand in for larger themes or abstract concepts. As such, exploring how Melville uses characters to represent ideas or images from American culture is an interesting topic. By interpreting how Melville develops his characters, readers can gain insight into how he views American society.
2. Assessing the Narrative Structure and Tone in “Bartleby the Scrivener”: “Bartleby the Scrivener” is a popular work of Melville’s that often sparks intense debates and conversations about its narrative structure and tone. Examining how different aspects of the story work together to create a specific effect or atmosphere is an intriguing topic to explore.
3. Analyzing the Significance of Merman in Moby Dick: Moby Dick contains a variety of characters, but one of the most dynamic is Merman, the harpooner. He is a complex character whose presence throughout the novel suggests a greater significance. Analyzing how Merman’s development and significance ties into the larger themes of Moby Dick is a great essay topic.
4. Evaluating Moby Dick’s Portrayal of Native Americans: Melville’s portrayal of Native Americans in Moby Dick is often discussed in literary circles. Examining how he uses Native American influences to construct his characters and tell his story is a great topic to consider.
5. Considering the Existential Tone of “Bartleby the Scrivener”: As mentioned previously, “Bartleby the Scrivener” has always been a source of discussion and debate. Analyzing the existential tone of the story can be quite interesting, as readers can identify how Melville conveys emotions such as confusion, hopelessness, and ambiguity.
When it comes to Herman Melville, analyzing his works can prove to be quite rewarding. By exploring the elements of his works in greater detail, readers can gain insight into his views on American society and culture. Examining Melville’s characters, narrative structure, and tones is certainly an intriguing endeavor. The topics explored above provide an excellent starting point for a Melville-related essay.