Pleased to Meet You


Ishmael from Moby Dick.
Any protagonist from a Paul Auster novel, lets call him Mr D.

Ishmael: “I am in search of an adventure”

Mr D: “I am a metaphysical body in search of existential questions.”

Ishmael: “I have been on a ship in search of a leviathan.”

Mr D: “My duplicate self, whom I identify as a foreign body, and yet is myself, was once in a book called ‘Leviathan'”

Both agree with each other over introductions.

Ishmael: “The journey to kill the leviathan that I have undertaken, is a metaphor for man’s search to conquer the unknown, in this case the seas.”

Mr D: “The protagonist of ‘Leviathan’ with whom I identify, is in search of the truth behind a death of a friend, in a bid to preserve it’s sanctity. And this search takes the form of a self- reflective narrative, like a book within a book.”

Ishmael: “So the protagonist of your book which you are in, is in some form an aspect of yourself, and he is trying to solve a mystery?”

Mr D: “Yes and the way to solve the mystery is to piece together through a novel within a novel the movements and motives of the deceased.”

Ishmael, scratching his head: “I provide an account of the search to kill Moby Dick. Moby Dick has escaped from various attempts of his life. In this way he has become a myth. And his death maybe recognised as the end of a mystery, for his body shall be proof of his life.”

Mr D: “So your part in the novel is as a witness, like at a crime?”

Ishmael: “Yes and the crime is a metaphysical one: the crime is the failure of mankind’s quest to provide answers to the mysteries of the world, in this case the journey of a leviathan, Moby Dick, in the deep seas.”

Mr D: “In a way you are an existential witness giving authorship to a story of epic proportions: one that takes place at sea.”

Ishmael: “Whereas your story is based on the universality of what friendship stands for, and you are uncovering the author, your friend, behind a crime, as a witness. ”

They both agree to the complexities of their situations, and ask each other finally the meaning behind the word ‘leviathan’.

Ishmael: “In my book a ‘leviathan’ is a scientific word to denote a creature that is part of ‘cetology’ which is the study of different sea mammals. But the word gives notice to so many myths over the years that it carries this aura of epic proportions.”

Mr D: “‘Leviathan’ is the title of my book, whose author of the crime, as I have witnessed, is signed as ‘Phantom of Liberty’, perhaps the clearest indication of what ‘Leviathan’ means to me.”

They both thank each other and say farewell.

<a href=””>Pleased to Meet You</a>


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