The Whaleship Essex | Theater Wit | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
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Josh Nordmark, Brad Woodard, Zach Bloomfield, Antonio Zhiurinskas, Drew Schad, and Ben Werling

Josh Nordmark, Brad Woodard, Zach Bloomfield, Antonio Zhiurinskas, Drew Schad, and Ben Werling

Emily Schwartz

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through Oct. 11 2014
Price: $30
American literature's most annoying classic was inspired by real-life events. Herman Melville based his epically digressive Moby-Dick on an 1820 incident in which a monster whale turned on a Nantucket whaling ship, the Essex, and rammed it—twice!—causing it to sink into the Pacific Ocean. What Melville excluded from his narrative—and it's a strange omission, inasmuch as he was willing to go into excruciating detail on pretty much everything else, from cetacean morphology to the depiction of the whale in Western art—is the fact that a number of Essex crewmen survived the sinking itself only to drift on the ocean in open boats for up to three months. The drifters who lasted long enough to be rescued did so by making meals of their mates. Continue reading >>

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