Leviathan

Leviathan is a magazine specializing in Humanities topics.

Articles

Vol. 10, No. 3, October

Melville's Notes from Thomas Roscoe's the German Novelists
Sometime after writing Mardi (1849) and before publishing Moby-Dick (1851), Herman Melville made notes from borrowed books in the back of a prized volume of Shakespeare. The seventh volume in Melville's seven-volume set of Shakespeare's Dramatic Works...
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Melville's Marginalia in Marlowe's Dramatic Works and in Selections from Lamb's Specimens of English Dramatic Poets
While arguing in "Hawthorne and His Mosses" (1850) that American critics were neglecting native geniuses in their midst, Herman Melville similarly decried the literary establishment's veneration of Shakespeare at the expense of other Elizabethan dramatists....
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All Astir
".... He was ever dusting his old lexicons and grammars, with a queer handkerchief, mockingly embellished with all the gay flags of all the known nations of the world." Moby-Dick, "Etymology" Like Melville's Usher, we dust our volumes with a...
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Lines from Arrowhead: 2008
The year 2008 will be exciting at Arrowhead, and we at the Berkshire Historical Society (BHS) want you to know what is happening. The Board of Directors has approved a number of new major initiatives. The Barn First, BHS plans to add a new barn...
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Vol. 7, No. 2, October

The Demigod Taji: Commentary on an Episode from Melville's Mardi
The Episode When the anonymous narrator of Mardi disembarks on the first land of Mardi, the natives think that he is white Taji, a sort of half-and-half deity, now and then an Avatar among them, and ranking among their inferior ex-officio demi-gods....
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Discipline and the Lash in Melville's White-Jacket
In his 1975 study, Discipline and Punish, Michel Foucault speaks of an early nineteenth-century transition between two different concepts of "penality"--from one regime based on the spectacular display of physical punishment to another founded on incarceration,...
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Melville, Lorenz Oken, and Biology: Engaging the "Long Now"
In Moby-Dick Herman Melville intuited and illumined "the heart of [the] almighty forlornness" that has so often made its presence felt in our age. (1) By any modern measure, Melville's dark vision a century and a half ago was a clairvoyant lock on...
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The Shape of the Whale: Flukes and Other Tales
There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness is the true method." So Melville avers in the opening sentence of Chapter 82 of Moby-Dick, "The Honor and Glory of Whaling." One enterprise to which he refers concerns the author's research...
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Vol. 7, No. 1, March

"Still Half Blending with the Blue of the Sea": Goethe's Theory of Colors in Moby-Dick
Scholars agree that by the time he composed Moby-Dick, Herman Melville was acquainted with Johann Wolfgang von Goethes' principal ideas on light and color. In the Hendricks House Edition of Moby-Dick, Luther S. Mansfield and Howard P. Vincent argue...
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We Are Family: Melville's Pierre
Despite the fact that, today, Melville's reputation and readership is greater than those of Caroline Lee Hentz's or Mary Jane Holmes's, two very popular antebellum writers, and despite Pierre's harangues against "the countless tribes of common novels,"...
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Melville and His Medusae: A Reading of Pierre
"Ye two pale ghosts, were this the other world, ye were not welcome. Away!--Good Angel and Bad Angel both!-For Pierre is neuter now!" ... it must be hard for man to be an uncompromising hero and a commander among his race, and yet never ruffle any...
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Philanthropic Taste: Race and Character in the Confidence-Man
Race and ethnicity have a strangely conspicuous place in Herman Melville's famously confounding novel, The Confidence-Man. Most conspicuous is their place on board the Mississippi riverboat Fidele, upon which the peculiar events of this April Fool's...
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Which Typee? the Fluid Text: A Theory of Revision and Editing for Book and Screen
Which Typee? The Fluid Text: A Theory of Revision and Editing for Book and Screen JOHN BRYANT (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2002) Which Typee should I read? The first British edition? The American "expurgated" edition with those sardonic...
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Vol. 6, No. 2, October

Fish, Sex and Cannibalism: Appetites for Conversion in Melville's Typee
In Typee, the theme of conversion is dominated by Melville's unflinching criticism of Christian projects to convert heathens. But conversion is also examined through Polynesian practices--tattooing, dress, eating, and lovemaking--aimed at bringing...
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"You Cannot Run and Read It": Melville's Search for the Right Reader
With his eyes strained by long hours of close work in the winter of 1850, Melville wrote to Evert Duyckinck that he spent his evenings "skimming over some large-printed book" that would not tax his eyesight. (1) No one has ever claimed that the book...
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Of Sharks and Pilot-Fish: Melville's Prophetic Art and the Dream of (French) America a Reprise and Reappraisal
Having considered the proceedings of a painter that serves me, I had a mind to imitate his way He chooses the fairest place and middle of any wall ... wherein to draw a picture, which he finishes with his utmost care and art, and the vacuity about...
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Douglass, Melville, Quincy, Shaw: Epistolary Convergences
In spite of their similar dates, Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) and Herman Melville (1819-1891) are often thought of as having lived, and written, in separate worlds. It therefore came as a revelation when John Stauffer in 2002 called attention to...
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Vol. 6, No. 1, March

From the Mast-Head
When you say "Melville," do you mean the man or the text? Do we envision the biographical person--a writer writing--or the sum total of his work--the writings alone. For many readers, the word "Melville" actually means only "Moby-Dick" (not the whale...
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Introduction
This special issue of Leviathan represents the ample scholarly and critical rewards of research devoted to Herman Melville's reading and sources. The heightened importance of reading- and source-study results from two separate but related factors of...
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The Historical and Literary Sources of Redburn's "Mysterious Night in London"
Chapter 46 of Redburn, "A Mysterious Night in London," has long remained a sticking point in a number of critical evaluations of the novel. The story of young Redburn's traumatic overnight experience with his new friend Harry Bolton at Aladdin's Palace,...
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Finding an Audience for Clarel in Matthew Arnold's Essays in Criticism
Melville read extensively in Matthew Arnold's writings before, during, and even after the composition of Clarel (1876). Walter Bezanson provides a detailed analysis of Melville's reading of Poems (in 1862) and New Poems (in 1871), arguing that Melville...
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A Cumulative Supplement to Melville's Reading (1988)
Since the publication of Merton M. Sealts, Jr.'s Melville's Reading: Revised and Enlarged Edition (1988), the ongoing recovery of Herman Melville's library has prompted four separate supplementary updates to the project's "Check-List of Books Owned...
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Melville's Marginalia in the Works of Sir William D'Avenant
Herman Melville acquired The Works of Sir William D'Avenant during his visit to London in 1849, began reading the book shortly before undertaking the composition of Moby-Dick (1851), and returned to the folio volume at least once more during the period...
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Vol. 5, No. 2, October

From the Mast-Head
Somewhere in the back of my mind, I still hold to the idea that the present issue of Leviathan is one that showcases the work of "young" scholars. The idea came to me over two years ago, and I kept the notion in mind during the issue's gestation period...
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Isabel as a Native American Ghost in Saddle Meadows: The Background of Pierre's "Race"
Although Isabel is described as black-eyed with jet-black hair and an "olive" and "immemorial" face, (1) there was little consideration of her race until Samuel Otter's 1994 article. (2) Otter initiated discussion of the centrality of her race by historicizing...
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Nervous Wrecks and Ginger-Nuts: Bartleby at a Standstill (1)
Where, however, from disease, or the food being inappropriate, the stomach is injured by what is eaten, consciousness then becomes painful for the express purpose of warning us that mischief has been done, and we must take means for its removal. In...
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Naturalist Psychology in Billy Budd
One of the most important cultural debates of the late nineteenth century was the status of morality in the wake of Darwinism and other naturalist accounts of human development. If Darwin's theories were correct, many Victorian moralists worried, there...
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Agrippina, "The Truest Woman That Ever Wed" (1)
It was partly geographical coincidence, my living on the Tyrrhenian coast of southern Italy, that brought me to Herman Melville's long poem, Naples in the Time of Bomba. When I published my edition of that work, together with the linked poems At the...
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Chaucerian Humor in Moby-Dick: Queequeg's "Ramadan"
We propose that Chaucer's "The Miller's Tale" informs the dramatic setting, humor, and tension of Ishmael's response to Queequeg's "Ramadan" (Moby-Dick, Ch. 17), and that Chaucerian characterization helps, as well, to shape Ishmael's pejorative response...
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Melville's Haglets
"And a 'borogove' is a thin shabby-looking bird with its feathers sticking out all round--something like a live mop" --Humpty Dumpty Melville's frequent "offshore" imagery is drawn from sea-experience not necessarily familiar to most students...
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Melville in the Pacific
The summer of 2003 saw a determined migration of scholars from different parts of the globe to what might be called the birthplaces of Melville's art: "Pantheistic ports" (Lahaina and Nuku Hiva), "Marquesas and glenned isles" (Tahiti and Maui)--all...
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Melville and the Pacific: Fourth International Meeting of the Melville Society June 3-7, Lahaina, Maui Charlene Avallone and Carolyn Karcher, Conference Chairs
The Maui conference came about by popular fiat. The way Charlene remembers it, Gail Coffler flagged her down at the Melville session at the Toronto MLA in '97 to say that since Charlene was in Hawai'i she really ought to host a Society gathering there....
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"Typee-Truants" among the "Pebbles"
A good omen, I thought. Here it is, 6:15 am Tuesday morning, Day One of the conference, and--togged in black swimwear and owl-eyed shades, slathered in number 50 sunblock, toting a cotton-mesh bag for flotsam and jetsam I would surely find on the beach...
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Melville's Pacific and the Pacific's Melville
It has become hard to find copies of Symmes Hole these days. Since I like to teach Ian Wedde's brilliant novel--whose central character thinks he is Herman Melville--at the tail end of a course on literature and cross-cultural encounters, I find I...
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Clarel in the Pacific
Of the over sixty papers presented at the fourth international Melville Conference in Lahaina, Hawaii, four directly addressed problems in Melville's poetry, some to a greater or lesser degree situating the poetry in relation to his Pacific years,...
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A Body of Thought: Reflections on Melville and the Pacific
Hey! all us one body, no? not many bodies. but, us no live' um! If all its get connection, huh? Then get only one body, no? All us together. so that's every body's body no? inside. And, if us going live' um, huh? Then us no going hate somebody, no?...
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"That Wall, Shoved Near": Reflections on Melville Studies Vis-a-Vis the Pacific
For a single author conference within a US academic framework, the "Melville and the Pacific" conference was exemplary; the ranging, carefully-organized program presented, among other things, a lively cross-section of Melville Studies; the general...
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Melville and the Pacific-Melville and the World
Now that just over a month has passed since the great Maul gam ended at the Royal Lahaina Resort hotel in Kaanapali, I've finally caught my breath. Not that going directly from one session to another for four and a half consecutive days in that magnificent...
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Maui 2003: The Fourth International Conference on Melville
The fourth international conference on Melville, "Melville and the Pacific" was held from June 3 to 7, 2003, at the oceanside Royal Lahaina Resort Hotel on Maui Island, Hawaii. Words cannot express our deep gratitude to Charlene Avallone (and her beloved...
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Melville and the Pacific Conference Program
1. Biography Hews [Moderator: Lyon Evans] Laurie Robertson-Lorant, "Melville in Mazatlan" Sanford E. Marovitz, "Mapping the Marquesas for Typee" Mary K. Bercaw Edwards, "Was Herman Melville Ever Really in the Typee Valley?" 2. Forms of Culture/Forms...
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Conference Participants
1) Avallone, Charlene avallone@lava.net 2) Baker, Anne abaker@unity.ncsu.edu 3) Balaam, Peter pjbalaam@princeton.edu 4) Barnum, Jill gidma001@tc.umn.edu 5) Barrett, Faith fpbarrett@csupomona.edu 6)Bercaw Edwards, Mary K. maryk@mail.mysticseaport.org...
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Melville in the Marquesas: A Conference Narrative
The Purdue Circle for America-Pacific Studies and Western Oregon University hosted the Melville in the Marquesas Conference and Expedition (June 29-July 10, 2003), the first major Melville event in the region since 1992 when John Bryant and Andre Revel...
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Vol. 5, No. 1, March

From the Mast-Head
In the fall of 2001, one month and one week after the terrorist attack on New York City, over two hundred Melville scholars, teachers, and enthusiasts gathered at Hofstra University's Cultural Center for a three-day international celebration of the...
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Moby-Dick, Myth, and Classical Moralism: Bulkington as Hercules
Readers of Moby-Dick have long been fascinated by the figure of Bulkington, who makes an exemplary appearance early in the novel and then mysteriously vanishes from the narrative. First introduced in "The Spouter Inn" (Ch. 3), Bulkington subsequently...
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The Hymn in Moby-Dick: Melville's Adaptation of Psalm 18
In "The Sermon," Chapter 9 of Moby-Dick, the hymn sung by the congregation congregation of Whalemans' Chapel contributes pointedly to Herman Melville's realistic depiction of organized worship and to the thematic coherence of both chapter and work....
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Moby-Dick 2001: An Artists' Forum: Introduction
Any sub-sub-librarian paging through the official program of the Moby-Dick 2001 Conference a decade or century from now would think there had been seven visual artists present at the Artists Forum in the early afternoon on October 18, 2001, the first...
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Melville's Painting. (Artists' Forum)
To produce a mighty book, you must choose a mighty theme" writes Melville in Moby-Dick. In a letter to Nathaniel Hawthorne, he confirms that the mighty theme "that impelled" his "book" was "the pervading thought." If we realize that Melville speaks...
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Eye to Eye: Painting White Whale: Moby Dick I. (Artists' Forum)
Visualizing the whale, Moby Dick, is like visualizing the sea, his element. He is present but elusive, massive yet dissolving figureless into passing motion, weighted yet suspended by a fierce buoyancy. The white whale of Melville inhabits the mystery...
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Inner Caveman. (Artists' Forum)
It is common in psychology to talk about getting in touch with your inner child. Herman Melville put me in touch with something I'd call my inner caveman. He lives in a cave with a large stone in front, and over the millennia, the rock has been transmuted...
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A Snug-Fitting Coffin Lid: One Student's Artistic Response to Queequeg. (Artists' Forum)
I encountered Melville's Moby-Dick as a sophomore student at Northern Kentucky University, enrolled in an Honors course that examined the novel and its impact on contemporary art. It should be pointed out that I signed up for this semester-long foray...
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Afterword. (Artists' Forum)
Just as Ishmael knew that he could never complete his task of classifying whales, he also knew that no painting of a whale could ever represent its full size or complexity His inconclusive conclusions apply equally well, of course, both to critical...
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Harrison Hayford (1916-2001): His Students Recollect
[When the pre-eminent Melville scholar Harrison Hayford died a little over a year ago, Leviathan asked Hershel Parker to compose an obituary. Rather than submit a conventional piece, he assembled comments from Harry's students, which not only reflect...
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March-October

From the Mast-Head
No one in the nineteenth century could escape Milton, and no American author embraced the challenge of reading, appreciating, and quarreling with Milton more than Herman Melville. Melville's use of Milton spans his career, from both the Eden and "pandemonium"...
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Melville's Quarrel with Milton: An Introduction
It has been almost twenty years since Melville's marked and annotated copy of Milton's poetry first came to light. The two-volume Hilliard and Gray edition (1836) resurfaced in the 1980s, and was inspected by Jay Leyda when it first came up for sale...
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Multitudinous, God-Omnipresent, Coral Insects: Pip, Isabel, and Melville's Miltonic Sublime
In certain chapters of Moby-Dick, as Nancy Fredricks, Barbara Glenn, and Richard S. Moore point out, Herman Melville strives for sublimity. (1) Pip, for example, experiences the overwhelming depth and extension of the sea and is, as a result, transported...
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Messianic Power and Satanic Decay: Milton in Moby-Dick
The Miltonic Try-Works Miltonic allusion in Moby-Dick, particularly the links between Ahab and the Satan of Paradise Lost, has long been recognized. During the Melville "revival" of the 1920s, John Freeman sensed that "man's first disobedience [and...
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Annotations on Civil War: Melville's Battle-Pieces and Milton's War in Heaven
For never can true reconcilement grow Where wounds of deadly hate have pierc'd so deep Milton's Satan, Paradise Lost IV. 98-99 (1) But where the sword has plunged so deep, And then been turned within the wound By deadly Hate ... ...
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`Too Intellectual a Poet Ever to Be Popular': Herman Melville and the Miltonic Dimension of 'Clarel.'(Critical Essay)
That Herman Melville read widely and employed various authors in his own work has been long established. That one of those authors was John Milton has been demonstrated for such novels as Typee (1846), Moby-Dick (1851), The Confidence-Man (1857), and...
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"Rousing Motions" and the Silence of God: Scripture and Immediate Revelation in Samson Agonistes and Clarel
An intriguing issue in John Milton's Samson Agonistes is the problem of immediate spiritual revelation from God, and whether the individual believer may discern accurately God's "promptings." Milton raises this question by portraying Samson's direct...
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Melville's Marginalia: Milton's Poems
In a letter of February 24, 1849 to Evert Duyckinck, Melville spoke of reading Shakespeare's works in "an edition in glorious great type, every letter whereof is a soldier." This was the edition that Melville had purchased, in seven volumes, published...
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Melville's Milton: A Transcription of Melville's Marginalia in His Copy of the Poetical Works of John Milton
The poems collected in The Poetical Works of John Milton span Milton's career, from his earliest lyric poems, masque, and pastoral elegy, to Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained, to his dramatic poem Samson Agonistes. The two-volume set also includes...
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The Poetical Works of John Milton
Volume I ANNOTATION [front end paper]: C. Horn 1860 ANNOTATION [front fly leaf]: H. Melville, N.Y. 1849 ANNOTATION [front fly leaf]: 1868 ANNOTATION [back fly leaf]: In Bartas The Life of Milton p.xxx. The beautiful monody of...
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The Poetical Works of John Milton: Volume II
ANNOTATION [front end paper]: C. Horn 1860 ANNOTATION [front fly leaf]: Pacific Ocean. N.L. 150 Sep. 21st 1860 ANNOTATION [front fly leaf]: H. Melville N.Y. 1849 Paradise Lost Book XI So spake, so wish'd much-humbled Eve; but fate Subscrib'd...
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