Don’t Call Me Ishmael

by

Michael Gerard Bauer

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Mom Character Analysis

Ishmael and Prue’s mom is, like Ishmael’s dad, a supportive parent. She’s on the city council. Ishmael’s mom only figures prominently in Ishmael’s retelling of how he got his name (Dad made Moby-Dick jokes when Mom was overdue in her pregnancy with Ishmael, and laughing caused her to go into labor).

Mom Quotes in Don’t Call Me Ishmael

The Don’t Call Me Ishmael quotes below are all either spoken by Mom or refer to Mom. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Greenwillow Books edition of Don’t Call Me Ishmael published in 2007.
Chapter 5 Quotes

“Ishmael? What kind of a wussy-crap name is that?”

What could I say? Up to this point in my life I hadn’t even known it was a wussy-crap name. No one had warned me that I had a wussy-crap name. Why would my parents give me a wussy-crap name in the first place? Was Herman Melville aware it was a wussy-crap name?

Related Characters: Barry Bagsley (speaker), Ishmael Leseur (speaker), Mom, Dad
Related Symbols: Moby-Dick
Page Number: 16
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Don’t Call Me Ishmael LitChart as a printable PDF.
Don’t Call Me Ishmael PDF

Mom Character Timeline in Don’t Call Me Ishmael

The timeline below shows where the character Mom appears in Don’t Call Me Ishmael. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
None of Ishmael’s family members—Dad, Mom, or his sister Prue—suffer from the syndrome. Prue, in fact, is “adorable” and almost a... (full context)
Chapter 3
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
Mom was due before the end of July. By the time August first rolled around, she’d... (full context)
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Mom had just taken a drink of water, but she hadn’t swallowed yet. Shocked at Dad’s... (full context)
Chapter 4
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
...course, Herman Melville. If Herman Melville hadn’t written his famous novel Moby-Dick 150 years ago, Mom and Dad wouldn’t have studied it at university and met each other in their American... (full context)
Chapter 8
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
...student. Ishmael’s five facts are that Prue is a genius, Dad played in a band, Mom is on the city council, Ishmael used to faint during the service when he was... (full context)
Chapter 26
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
...Barry isn’t tormenting him anymore, and Kelly Faulkner might even be a possible love interest. Mom and Dad even notice the change, and Prue is impressed. This is a real compliment... (full context)
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
...the century as inspiration. She didn’t stop there, though. After she made more influential men, Mom suggested Prue add women like Joan of Arc and writers like Hemingway. By the time... (full context)
Chapter 28
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
Ishmael races around the house, shouting for Mom to tell him where his clean school uniforms are. It feels like a dream where... (full context)
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
...an alien is going to burst out of his chest. Dad insists that he and Mom are proud of Ishmael and tells Ishmael not to worry. Fortunately, Ishmael is hysterical, not... (full context)
Chapter 31
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
...another room, dizzy and surrounded by concerned people. Razza’s mom promises to explain things to Mom and Dad, so when Ishmael gets home, he goes straight to his room. Mom and... (full context)
Chapter 36
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon
The Power of Language Theme Icon
...steps to the front of the room when Ignatius calls his name. In the audience, Mom and Dad are trying unsuccessfully to look casual. (full context)
Chapter 45
Identity and Coming of Age Theme Icon
Bullying and Courage Theme Icon
Mom drops Ishmael off on the night of the final school event. Mom, Dad, and Prue... (full context)