The book Moby Dick by Herman Melville addresses the topics of wealth, class, race and gender. Queequeg is Herman Melville’s way of addressing each of these topics. Queequeg is the character that Herman Melville uses that addresses all 4 themes in a way. He goes against the commonly held ideas of the time.
Queequeg is the noble savage. He defies the idea of race because even though he is a savage from Africa he is more valuable to the crew than Ishmael, who is a white male. He is described as a cloth, a quilt of all the polygonal races combined. This cloth in a way represents unity where no race is superior to another.
Queequeg also is transcendence in gender. He shows compassion not capable of men at the time. In the Spouter Inn, within the novel, Queequeq is portrayed as putting his arm around Ishmael in an almost protective manner. It shows that men were capable of love and just as much as women.
Queequeg is a classless character. Though he supposedly has no place in the world he saves one of the people that disgraces him from drowning. He is just a harpooner and uses his skill to make his position in society, not his birth right.
Queequeg is not of much wealth but is assigned to the ninetieth layer just because of his skill. The amount of wealth he receives from being a crew member does not come from his race or class but from his skill. Even though in ways he is homosexual, none of this affects his position in society. Queequeg is the perfect character that depicts to these 4 themes where he makes his place in the novel against the commonly held trends of society.