Herman Melville, the author of Moby Dick, takes us once again to the sea in the tragic, yet triumphant story of Billy Budd.
A model merchant seaman, admired by crew and officers alike for his skill, masculine beauty, and noble nature, Billy Budd's life changes dramatically and irrevocably when he is impressed into the military. Like many sailors in the late 18th century, Billy Budd is forced into service aboard a war ship where life is ruthless and unforgiving.
Admidst the accusations of inciting a mutiny and the harsh consequence of one impulsive act, Billy Budd must find the courage to remain strong and merciful, even while his life hangs in the jeopardy.
Read by: John Hedigan
Editor: Shannon Chappell
Perhaps I'm biased because I wrote my master's thesis on Melville, but I think what he shows about human nature through his novel, particularly Billy Budd, Benito Cereno and Moby-Dic, is stunning. He truly shows what the human is capable of. In this case, Melville not only shows how depraved certain people naturally are, but how the cowardly actgions of those in power are so devastating both to themselves and their subordinates.