The reader worries along with the surgeon as he carries out the captain

The reader worries along with the surgeon as he carries out the captain

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Unformatted text preview: The reader worries along with the surgeon as he carries out the captain's orders to alert the ship's officers. Again, Melville resorts to rhetorical questions to heighten drama and to draw attention to the question of the captain's sanity: Has the captain lost his customary aplomb for dealing with tense situations? Is he mentally stable after witnessing so harrowing a scene in his chambers? Is there a better way of judging the tragic act that has caused an underling to take the life of an officer? Melville skillfully and dramatically contrasts differing points of view in the impromptu courtroom: Billy, vulnerable and wholly mystified by courtroom subtleties, depends on the captain to render justice. The captain of the marines, a soldier rather out of place among sailors, presses Vere for other testimony that might shed light on Claggart's accusation.for other testimony that might shed light on Claggart's accusation....
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