The Daily Dick: Musings From the Greatest Novel Ever
"So ignorant are most landsmen of some of the plainest and most palpable wonders of the world, that without some hints touching the plain facts, historical and otherwise, of the fishery, they might scout at Moby Dick as a monstrous fable, or still worse and more detestable, a hideous and intolerable allegory."
Musing: Oh how I love this line! Most critics say things like this: "Melville's most famous novel, “Moby-Dick” presents an allegorical story of humanity's dangerous search for meaning. In the book, 'meaning' is represented by Moby Dick, a monstrous white whale pursued by the maniacal Captain Ahab." In the passage from the novel, Melville himself seems to be winking at us. Take this book as a book about whaling, he says. Don't look for more. But we do.