In fascinating new contextual readings of four of Herman Melville's novels—Typee, White-Jacket, Moby-Dick, and Pierre—Samuel Otter delves into Melville's exorbitant prose to show how he anatomizes ideology, making it palpable and strange. Otter portrays Melville as deeply concerned with issues of race, the body, gender, sentiment, and national identity. He articulates a range of contemporary texts (narratives of travelers, seamen, and slaves; racial and aesthetic treatises; fiction; poetry; and essays) in order to flesh out Melville's discursive world.
Otter presents Melville's works as "inside narratives" offering material analyses of consciousness. Chapters center on the tattooed faces in Typee, the flogged bodies in White-Jacket, the scrutinized heads in Moby-Dick, and the desiring eyes and eloquent, constricted hearts of Pierre. Otter shows how Melville's books tell of the epic quest to know the secrets of the human body. Rather than dismiss contemporary beliefs about race, self, and nation, Melville inhabits them, acknowledging their appeal and examining their sway.
Meticulously researched and brilliantly argued, this groundbreaking study links Melville's words to his world and presses the relations between discourse and ideology. It will deeply influence all future studies of Melville and his work.
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Jumping out of Ones Skin in WhiteJacket
SHIP STATE AND BODY
THE SCENE OF FLOGGING IN DOUGLASS PENNINGTON AND NORTHUP
THE ANALOGY WITH SLAVERY IN LEECH MCNALLY BROWNE AND DANA
NATURAL FEATURES AND NATIONAL CHARACTER
THOMAS COLE AND THE VISUAL EMBRACE
NATHANIEL PARKER WILLIS AND THE TASTE FOR SCENERY
SUSAN COOPER AND THE PERSISTENCE OF VISION
MELVILLES CLOGGED OPTICS
Inscribed Hearts in Pierre
THE HEART ON THE PAGE
DONALD GRANT MITCHELLS TREATISES CONCERNING THE SENTIMENTAL AFFECTIONS
Getting inside Heads in MobyDick
SAMUEL GEORGE MORTON AND THE QUEST FOR CRANIAL CONTENTS
THE LAWS OF ANATOMY IN ANTEBELLUM ETHNOLOGY
THE ETHNOLOGICAL CRITIQUES OF DOUGLASS BROWN AND APESS
CETOLOGY AND ETHNOLOGY IN MOBYDICK
TO LOOK AND TO KNOW
Penetrating Eyes in Pierre
Other editions - View all
American analogy anatomy antebellum argues associations authority become body Brown cannibalism Captain century chapter character color compares contents corporeal Crania critics culture describes desire difference discusses effects effort Essay ethnology European eyes face feeling female Fern fiction figure flesh flogging force gives hand head heart human images imagination Indian inside interpret Ishmael jacket land landscape Leaves letter lines literary look male marks Marquesan meaning Melville Melville's Mitchell Moby-Dick Morton narrative narrator Native natural nineteenth-century object observer offers passage Pierre Pierre's poem popular position practice present Queequeg race racial readers represented response revealing Reveries rhetoric Ruth sailor scene scenery seems sense sentimental shape ship sketches skin skull slave slavery story structure suggests surface takes tattooing thought tion Tommo turn Typee United Voyage whale White-Jacket writing young
Page 7 - What I feel most moved to write, that is banned,— it will not pay. Yet, altogether, write the other way I cannot. So the product is a final hash, and all my books are botches.