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Mr Matthew Barr

Professor of Media Studies

Mr Matthew Barr

Moby Dick
by Herman Melville

Some books imprint themselves into a person's life in special ways. For many years I had intended on reading "Moby Dick" but had not done so, perhaps intimidated by the book and its powerful status. My father gave me a beautiful edition of "Moby Dick" in 2002, and I read it that summer. At that time I was heavily involved with making a documentary ("Wild Caught") about small-scale commercial fishermen living in Sneads Ferry, NC. Many times I had gone on fishing trips with the shrimpers and fin-fishermen, filming them as they worked in their ancient craft. I was searching for a way to express the beauty and danger of fishing, its allure and its power. "Moby Dick" was deep and strong, and helped me to try to tell the story. It inspired me as no other book ever has.