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  • From The Ship

The Daily Dick: A Study in Leadership

"'No, no, my lad; stricken, blasted, if he be, Ahab has his humanities!'”


Study: Captain Peleg says this line to Ishmael after Ishmael asks what Captain Ahab is like. Lately I have heard a lot of comparisons to Ahab and Trump - that is what started me on this leadership journey through Moby-Dick. I find it interesting that one of the first things we learn about Ahab is that he "has his humanities." Melville is a great writer. He knows that a purely evil main character would soon wear a reader out. Ahab is both good and bad. We see that clearly as the book progresses. He is also the leader of the ship. And of all his characteristics, his humanity is the first thing that is stressed. The Oxford English Dictionary defines humanities as “human attributes; traits or touches of human nature or feeling; points that concern man, or appeal to the human sensibilities.”

Humanity is sadly lacking in most of our leaders today.

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