In a literal sense, it has no more meaning than that, but of course Ishmael is using the term satirically. In old movies set in Africa, you’ll almost always hear the servile natives address the Great White Hunter as Bwana. (Naturally he knows much more about hunting in Africa than they do—and of course he’s smarter, braver, and so on.)

ID: 610
updated: 18 Jan 2003