What a Work of Art Communicates: Example from “Moby Dick”

Vik RubenfeldNovelLeave a Comment

Here’s the paragraph that introduces Stubb, in Herman Melville’s MOBY DICK. Stubb was the second mate. He was a native of Cape Cod; and hence, according to local usage, was called a Cape-Cod-man. A happy-go-lucky; neither craven nor valiant; taking perils as they came with an indifferent air; and while engaged in the most imminent crisis of the chase, toiling away, … Read More

Amazingly Vivid Characters in “Jane Eyre”

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An illustration from the Book Jane Eyre is Reading in Chapter 1, “Bewick’s History of British Birds”  Here are the very first paragraphs of “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte. There was no possibility of taking a walk that day. We had been wandering, indeed, in the leafless shrubbery an hour in the morning; but since dinner (Mrs. Reed, when there … Read More

Cezanne’s Breathtaking Painting, “Lake Annecy”

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This one goes out to my Twitter friend @KnitSix, who also likes Cezanne. This Cezanne painting is breathtaking, even as an image on a web page. You feel exactly the beauty of seeing that same scene for yourself. Cezanne painted the view from his hotel room. What’s so fascinating, of course, is that you could take a photo of the same … Read More

Emotional Insight in an Amazing Painting by Rousseau

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This is one of Rousseau’s most famous paintings – “Tiger in a Tropical Storm.” Rousseau’s paintings pack a big emotional wallop. You feel the fear, the desperation of the tiger. The white light on the top of the tiger’s head and on the nearby leaves shows the light of a lighting bolt that is alarming him. You feel sympathy for the … Read More

Da Vinci’s “The Last Supper”

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Today we’ll have a look at one of the most famous paintings of all time, Da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.”  It depicts the moment when Jesus has just informed the disciples that one of them will betray him. The first thing you notice, as a way of finding your way in to the emotional meaning of the painting, is that … Read More