The world-famous novel Moby Dick by Henry Melville was published in 1851 in London and New York. The fateful voyage of the whaling ship Pequod under Captain Ahab chasing the white whale in blind rage, because it once ripped up the Captains leg, not only describes the world of the whalers in the 18th/19th century, it also takes the reader on a journey with philosophical, scientific, art historical and mythological reflectations.
In spring 2011 after artists Angela Cockayne and author Philip Hoare organized a unique whale symposium, the two artists invited writers, musicians, scientists and scholars to a very special project – to read from Moby Dick, the novel that both Cockrayne and Hoare had always been so fascinated and drawn into the spell.
The result is an “audio book” of a special kind: Celebrities like Tilda Swinton, Neil Tennant, Peter Burgess, David Cameron and further 132 notable personalities each read a chapter from the novel.
Benedict Cumberbatch reads Chapter 58, “Brit”.
What’s happening in Moby Dick:
The novel begins with “Call me Ishmael”, the sailor who tells his story and Captain Ahab’s from the beginning in the first person.
Ismael after a few journeys on commercial ships gets hired as a whaler on the ship Pequod, named after a exterminated tribe of Indians. His Captain Ahab is a charismatic, hate-filled man who only has one goal: to hunt the white whale that has ripped off his leg a long time ago. The international crew follows their captain on a sinister fanatical hunt for the enemy in the sea, inspired by a high reward. Only mate Starbuck, an experienced and courageous sailor pits against Ahab. After several confrontations Starbuck is even considering to kill the mad captain to protect the team, but leaves it in consideration.
The journey leads the team to the Cape of Good Hope, through the Indian Ocean and the Indonesian islands until they finally meet the white whale, Moby Dick.
After a three-day hunt it comes to the final battle between Ahab and his hated enemy. Moby Dick pulls his fighter ultimately underwater. Only Ishmael survives the battle.
The book is available on Amazon
All chapters from reading are available on www.mobydickbigread.com
Benedict’s chapter: 58 – Brit