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Billy Budd

by Herman Melville  |  Grades 11-12  

Cheerful, hardworking, and handsome, Billy is pressed into naval service aboard a British ship during the Napoleonic wars. The innocent and lovable young man quickly wins the hearts of all his comrades, save one: Claggart, the implacably bitter master-at-arms, who falsely accuses Billy of inciting mutiny.

Rich in ambiguities, Herman Melville's haunting parable of the clash between good and evil raises thought-provoking issues related to the conflict between the requirements of the law and the needs of humanity. 

Available Teacher Guides, Lesson Plans, Novel Units, and Activities for Billy Budd by Herman Melville: