Herman Melville

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 1999-08-01
  • Publisher: Columbia Univ Pr

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Supplemental Materials

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At last available in a single volume: comprehensive overviews and concise analyses of the key critical texts and approaches to the most-studied works of literature. By assembling extracts from essays, reviews, and articles, the columbia critical guides provide students with ready access to the most important secondary writings on a single text or pair of texts by a given writer.each volume: -- Offers a balanced and nuanced approach to criticism, drawing on a wide array of British and American sources -- Explains criticism in terms of key approaches, allowing students the grasp the central issues for each work -- Is edited by a noted scholar who specializes in the writer or work in question -- Includes a complete bibliography, notes, and index.The huge range of critical debate about this monster of a novel confirms moby-dick's status as a vital exploration of the role of American ideology in defining modern consciousness. This guide starts with extracts from Melville's own letters and essays and from early reviews of moby-dick that set the terms for later critical evaluations. Subsequent chapters deal with the "Melville Revival" of the 1920s and the novel's central place in American Studies. The final chapters examine postmodern readings of the text, and how these provide new models for thinking about American culture.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 7
Early Reviewsp. 17
The 'Melville Revival'p. 33
The 1940s: Moby-Dick and the 'American Renaissance'p. 51
The 1950s: 'Myth Criticism' and the Growth of American Studiesp. 76
Formalist Approaches, Humanist Readingsp. 94
Cultural Materialism and 'Reconstructive' Readingsp. 115
Deconstructive Reading, 'Post-humanist' Critiques and 'New Americanists'p. 146
Bibliographyp. 166
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