• Research Paper on:
    Billy Budd

    Number of Pages: 8


    Summary of the research paper:

    An analysis of the relationships between the main characters in Billy Budd, with particular reference to the organizational structure of the ship's crew and Vere's power and authority as captain. Bibliography lists 9 sources

    Name of Research Paper File: JL5_JLbilbud.rtf

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    Unformatted Sample Text from the Research Paper:
    that, perhaps ironically, much of the conflict which occurs between Billy and the other characters comes about because in many ways, Billy has little conflict within himself. Despite the fact  that Melville portrays Billy as a flawed human being, who is not "perfect", despite his innocent and ingenuous nature, it is Billys inability to understand the concepts surrounding personal  conflict which contribute to his downfall. Having never had to be anything other than his affable and popular self, he is unaware of the emotional and psychological conflict which exists  in other human beings, and therefore finds it impossible to deal with it when such conflicts impinge directly on him and his interaction with others.  He cannot defend himself against the evil doings of others,  because he does not understand them, or the motivation behind them. Dansker, by contrast, is cynical and well aware of the less than altruistic motives of others: Billys innocence, however,  prevents him from understanding or accepting the warnings which Dansker tries to give him. Similarly, he is incapable of comprehending the sheer malice which forms such an essential part of  Claggarts psychological make-up, because he himself has never had to struggle between good and evil as personal motivators. Billy judges others only by himself, and consequently is left defenceless when  he is faced with conflict. Claggart displays the opposite  perspective: he also judges others by himself, but where Billy sees good, Claggart sees evil. To Billy, an evil act is unintentional: to Claggart, an unintentional act is motivated by 

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