Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 25 Share on Twitter Printer Friendly Page More Sharing
Exclusive to OpEdNews:
Life Arts    H4'ed 7/8/20

Is Melville's 18,000-line 1876 centennial poem worth reading today? (REVIEW ESSAY)

By       (Page 1 of 6 pages) (View How Many People Read This)   No comments
Author 38575
Message Thomas Farrell
Become a Fan
  (21 fans)

Herman Melville profile.
Herman Melville profile.
(Image by (From Wikimedia) Unknown photographer, Author: Unknown photographer)
  Details   Source   DMCA

Duluth, Minnesota (OpEdNews) July 8, 2020: Herman Melville (1819-1891), whose paternal and maternal grandfathers were heroes of the American Revolution, heroically devoted years of his life in obscurity as a minor customs official in Manhattan to writing his long centennial poem Clarel: A Poem and Pilgrimage in the Holy Land (1876) - an American Protestant jeremiad in the well-established tradition that Sacvan Bercovitch describes in his book The American Jeremiad (University of Wisconsin Press, 1978; 2nd ed., 2012), in which he discusses Melville from time to time (see the index entry for Melville for specific page references).

However, without ever adverting explicitly to the American Protestant jeremiad tradition in general, or to Bercovitch's book in particular, William Potter (born in 1955; Ph.D. in English and American Literature, City University of New York, 1998) otherwise extensively reviews pertinent related literature in his 2004 book Melville's Clarel and the Intersympathy of Creeds (Kent State University Press). As Potter explains on page xiii, the expression "the intersympathy of creeds" is taken from Melville's poem Clarel (Part 1, Canto 5, Line 207 - or, for short, 1.5.207).

An overview of Potter's book is in order. After the title page and the copyright page, the book includes the following parts:

Dramatis Personae [Names of Nine Characters, with Lines from the Poem Describing Each One] (page v)

Contents (page vii)

Acknowledgments (pages ix-x)

Introduction (pages xi-xxii)

Chapter 1: Clarel and Nineteenth-Century Comparative Religion (pages 3-9)

Chapter 2: Melville as Comparative Religionist (pages 10-19)

Chapter 3: Nineteenth-Century Comparative Religion and the Evolutionary Model (pages 20-24)

Chapter 4: Manifest Destiny and the "American Religion" (pages 25-37)

Next Page  1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6

(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).

 

Rate It | View Ratings

Thomas Farrell Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Thomas James Farrell is professor emeritus of writing studies at the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD). He started teaching at UMD in Fall 1987, and he retired from UMD at the end of May 2009. He was born in 1944. He holds three degrees from Saint Louis University (SLU): B.A. in English, 1966; M.A.(T) in English 1968; Ph.D.in higher education, 1974. On May 16, 1969, the editors of the SLU student newspaper named him Man of the Year, an honor customarily conferred on an administrator or a faculty member, not on a graduate student -- nor on a woman up to that time. He is the proud author of the book (more...)
 

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Was the Indian Jesuit Anthony de Mello Murdered in the U.S. 25 Years Ago? (BOOK REVIEW)

Who Was Walter Ong, and Why Is His Thought Important Today?

More Americans Should Live Heroic Lives of Virtue (Review Essay)

Martha Nussbaum on Why Democracy Needs the Humanities (Book Review)

Hillary Clinton Urges Us to Stand Up to Extremists in the U.S.

Matthew Fox's Critique of the Roman Catholic Church

To View Comments or Join the Conversation: