English 6110-01  Seminar in American Literature I

Spring 2009
Wednesdays 5:30-8:00 pm
Pafford 309

Dr. Randy Hendricks
TLC 2237

Office hours: By appointment.

Reserve List
 Selected Bibliography
Expectations and Assignments
January            7      Course Introduction
                      14  Typee
                      21  Typee Oral Report  (Nancy McElroy)
                      28  White Jacket I-XLVI Oral Report  (Kim Madden)
February          4    White Jacket XLVII-The End
                      11      Moby Dick  Chapters  Etymology and Extracts-Chapter 40 Oral Report (Amy Lavender)
                      18      Moby Dick   Chapters 41-90  
                      25     Moby Dick   Chapter 91-Epilogue   
March              4     Moby Dick; Brief Analytical Paper Due
                      11     Pierre    Oral Report (Rod McRae)
                      18     Spring Break
                      25      The short stories:  “Bartleby,” “The Piazza,” “The Encantadas,” “The Paradise of Bachelors and  the Tartarus of Maids.” Oral Report on "Bartleby"  (Heather
April                1       "Benito Cereno":  Oral Report  (Rosie Grubbs)
                        8      The Conficence Man   Oral Reports 
                      15      Select Poems of Herman Melville  Oral Report; RESEARCH PAPER DRAFTS DUE <>
                      22      Billy Budd;  Oral Report; DISTRIBUTION OF PRIMARY CRITIQUES
<>                  29      CRITIQUES
May                 6     Seminar Papers Due

Expectations: Scrupulous preparation for class, faithful attendance, enthusiastic participation (of which listening attentively to the views of others is a major part), professional courtesy to all other members of the seminar, meeting all deadlines for assignments, and consultation with the instructor on all major assignments and on any other matters that might require it.  All of these  behaviors are prerequisite to the instructor's acceptance of the assignments below for evaluation.

Discussion Points:  Students will lead discussion by preparing brief informal responses to assignments to bring before the class.  The responses may take the form of questions or observations.  You'll present them orally and turn in a written version, which might be a short paragraph and should not exceed a page in length.  Each student will present a point for discussion at every other meeting.    When we have multiple texts, as with the poems, choose to comment on what interests you most.   Those who are not
presenting will have the primary responsibility for responding to presenters.  No student will be expected to present a discussion point at a meeting during
which he or she makes an oral report.  10% of grade

Oral Report:  Each member of the seminar will prepare a15-20 minute teaching presentation on one of the works we study.  These assignments will be worked out at the first meeting.  Each report should include:
      1.  A brief discussion of the work in relation to Melville's career
      2.  A summary of significant criticism on the work:  including assessments by three critics from the  list of critics.
      3.  The student's original observations/interpretations of the primary text.  The report should be a teaching  presentation, aimed at delivering information,
but also prompting discussion and questions.  10% of grade.  See Report Assignments

Brief Analytical Paper.  Explication or analysis of some element of a work or works studied early in the semester.  Though the paper topic may be prompted
by secondary reading, no secondary sources are required for this exercise in close reading of text(s). Due March 4.  20% of grade

Directions:  The paper should be 4-5 pages, typed and double spaced; controlled by a central idea--which might range from an interpretation to simply
pointing out a problem Melville presents for readers trying to interpret his work; and should be distinguished by ample close analysis of the literary text(s).  This
last requirement may be met by an extended discussion of a single passage or briefer, connected discussions of multiple passages.

Seminar Paper:   Each member of the seminar will prepare a 12-15 page paper on a topic arrived at in consultation with the instructor.  The paper must argue
an original thesis and be thoroughly grounded in appropriate Melville criticism.  50 % of grade.  An annotated bibliography is required along with the research paper--see below.  Note that this assignment is not a substitute for the Works Cited section of your paper.  You may well annotate a source you consult but do not cite in your final paper.  Drafts due April 15.  Final draft due May 6.

Annotated Bibliography:  provide a list of 8-10 secondary sources (journal articles, book chapters, or books)  you consult as part of
your research for the paper.  Provide a standard MLA Works Cited entry for each, and provide after each entry a brief descriptive note.  Do
not evaluate or analyze the article/chapter.  For example:

          Mathison, John K.  "Nelly Dean and the Power of Wuthering Heights."  Nineteenth-Century Fiction 11.  106-29.  Rpt. in
              Wuthering  Heights:  An Anthology of Criticism.  Ed. Alastair Everitt.  New York:  Barnes & Noble, 1967.  84-110.

               Mathison argues that  the power of the novel derives from the fact that the narrator, Nelly Dean, is too "normal" and
               "healthy" to comprehend the exorbitant passions and actions of characters such as Heathcliff and Catherine.  The powerful
               effect on readers occur as they realize the inadequacy of the "normal" to interpret the deeper and truer feelings of the main
               characters and are forced to become active advocates for Heathcliff and Catherine in ways that could not occur with an
               omniscient narrator or a less admirable first-person narrator.  It is in this power that Brontë has created a genuine work of

Paper Critique: (10% of grade) Each member of the seminar will distribute three copies of a complete draft of his/her seminar paper on April 15--one copy for the instructor and one copy each for the primary and secondary reviewers. Note:  the required annotated bibliography need not be distributed at this time. Note:  By asking for e-mail distribution we changed this procedure.  Everyone gets a copy.

Primary Reviewer--prepare a one page, typed, double-spaced response to the draft commenting on each of the following four areas: (1) focus and
significance, (2) depth and quality of development, (3) quality and appropriateness of research revealed in the draft, and (4) additional areas as dictated by the
individual paper.  It is also assumed that comments will be made on the typescript of the draft itself.

Three copies of this primary review will be distributed on April 22--to the instructor, to the author, and to the secondary reviewer.  Again, let's do this by e-mail so everyone can see the work.  Copy and bring everything to class.

Secondary Reviewer--prepare a half page, typed, doubled-spaced response to the draft in light of the primary review--seconding important observations
made by primary reviewer, adding comment on areas not covered by primary reviewer,  and/or offering alternative points for consideration.  Bring three copies
to class on April 27.  Same modification as above.

Note:  The written version of both reviews may be longer than the assigned length if the reviewer deems more space is necessary to do the job.  Both primary
and secondary reviews will be presented in an informal oral format on April 29, followed by equally informal responses from the author and instructor.

Primary and secondary reviewers for each paper assigned below:
  Author                                Primary                                        Secondary

  Rosie                                  Heather                                         Amy

 Heather                                 Amy                                            Kim

 Amy                                     Kim                                             Nancy

Kim                                      Nancy                                          Rod

Nancy                                    Rod                                             Rosie

Rod                                       Rosie                                            Heather

Library Reserve.  Available for 7-day checkout

Parker, Hershel.  Herman Melville:  A Biography 2 vols. PS2386 .P37 1996
Duban, James, Melville’s Major Fiction:  Politics, Theology, and Imagination, PS2387. D8 1983
Chase, Richard, Herman Melville:  A Critical Study, PS2386 .C5
Leyda, Jay, The Melville Log, 2 vols. 1 PS2386LV
 Sealts, Merton M., Jr., Melville’s Reading:  Revised and Enlarged Edition, PS2388 .B6 S43 1988
Melville, Herman,  The Writings of Herman Melville, Vol. 14, Correspondence, PS2380 F68
Melville, Herman,  The Writings of Herman Melville, Vol. 15, Journals, PS2380 F68
Thompson, Lawrence, Melville’s Quarrel with God, PS2388 R4 .T5
Markels, Julian, Melville and the Politics of Identity, PS2384 M62 M27 1993
Branch, Watson G.,  Melville: The Critical Heritage, PS2386.B81X
Vincent, Howard P.  The Tailoring of Melville’sWhite Jacket, PS2384 W53 V5
Hayes, Kevin J., The Critical Response to Herman Melville’sMoby Dick, PS2384 M62 C76
Higgins & Parker, Critical Essays on Herman Melville’s Moby Dick, Ps2384 M62 C75 1992
Davis, Clark, After the Whale: Melville in the Wake of Moby Dick, PS2387 .D37 1995
Higgins & Parker, Critical Essays on Herman Melville’s Pierre, PS2384 .P53 C75
Creech, James, Closet Writing/Gay Reading:  The Case of Melville’s Pierre, PS2384. P53 C74
Burkholder, Robert E.
  Critical Essays on Herman Melville’s “Benito Cereno,” PS2384. B42
 C75 1992
McCall, Dan, The Silence of Bartleby, PS2384.B28 M3 1989
Fisher, Marvin, Going UnderMelville’s Short Fiction and the American 1850’s, PS2387 .F54
Garner, Stanton, The Civil War World of Herman Melville, PS2384. B3
Shurr, William H.
The Mystery of Iniquity:  Melville as Poet, 1857-1891, PS2387. S5
Springer, Haskell S.
  The Merrill Studies in Billy Budd, PS2384 B7 S6

Melville:  A  Selected Bibliography
A Supplement to the Reserve List for English 6110--Herman Melville:  Then and Now

Related General Critical Studies

Fiedler, Leslie.  Love and Death in the American Novel, rev. edNew York:  Stein and Day,  1966.
Hoffman, Daniel G.  Form and Fable in American FictionNew YorkOxford UP, 1961.
Lewis, R. W. B. The American Adam.Chicago:  U of Chicago P, 1955.
Matthiessen, F. O.  American Renaissance:  Art and Experience in the Age of Emerson and  WhitmanNew YorkOxford UP, 1941.

Biographical Studies of Melville

Allen, Gay Wilson, Melville and His World.New York:  Viking, 1971.
Charvat, William, "Melville's Income." American Literature, 15 (1943):  251–61.
Davis, Merrell R., "Melville's Midwestern Lecture Tour, 1859." Philological Quarterly, 20   (1941):  46–57.
Delbanco, Andrew.  Melville:  His World and Work (2005)
Gilman, William H., "Melville'sLiverpool Trip."  Modern Language Notes, 61 (1946): 543–47.
Gohdes, Clarence, "Melville's Friend 'Toby.'" Modern Language Notes  59 (January 1944):  52–  55.
Hayford, Harrison and Merrell Davis."Herman Melville as Office–Seeker."Parts 1 & 2.   Modern Language Quarterly 10 (June, September 1949): 168–83, 377–88.
Heflin, Wilson L. "Melville's Third Whaler."  Modern Language Notes 64 (1949):  241–45.
Howard, Leon.  Herman Melville: A Biography (1958)
Miller, Edwin H.  Melville.
Quirk, Tom, "The Judge Dragged to the Bar:  Melville, Shaw, and the Wester Murder Trial."   Melville Society Extracts 84 (February 1991):  1–8.
Robertson–Lorant, Laurie.  Melville: A BiographyNew York:  Clarkson Potter, 1996.
Tanselle, G. Thomas, "The Sales of Melville's Books." Harvard Library Bulletin 18 (April   1969), 195–215.
Watson, Charles N., Jr. "The Estrangement of Hawthorne and Melville."New England  Quarterly 46.3  (1973):  380–402.
Winslow, Richard E., III. "New Reviews Trace Melville's Reputation."  Melville Society  Extracts 89 (June 1992):  7–12.

Topical Studies

Bowen, Merlin.  The Long Encounter:  Self and Experience in the Writings of Herman Melville.Chicago:  U of Chicago P., 1960.
Brodhead, Richard H. Hawthorne, Melville, and the Novel.Chicago:  U of Chicago P., 1976.
Cameron, Sharon. The Coporeal Self:  Allegories of the Body in Melville and Hawthorne. Baltimore:  Johns Hopkins UP, 1988.
DimockWai–chee. Empire for Liberty:  Melville and the Poetics of Individualism. Princeton: Princeton UP, 1989.
Dryden, Edgar A. Melville's Thematics of Form: The Great Art of Telling the Truth. Baltimore:   Johns Hopkins UP, 1968.
Franklin, H. Bruce.  The Wake of the Gods:  Melville's Mythology.  Stanford:  Stanford UP,  1963.
Grenberg, Bruce L.  Some Other World to Find:  Quest and Negation in the Works of Herman  MelvilleUrbana:  U of Illinois P, 1989.
Karcher, Carolyn L.  Shadow over the Promised Land:  Slavery, Race, and Violence  in    Melville's AmericaBaton RougeLouisianaState UP, 1980.
Kearns,  Michael S.  "Phantoms of the Mind:  Melville's Criticism of Idealistic Psychology."  ESQ:  A Journal of the American Renaissance 35.2 (1989): 147–60.
Lebowitz, Alan.  Progress into Silence:  A Study of Melville's Heroes. Bloomington: Indiana  UP, 1970.
Martin, Robert K. Hero, Captain, and Stranger:  Male Friendship, Social Critique, and Literary  Form in the Sea Novels of Herman MelvilleChapel Hill:  U of North Carolina P, 1986.
Mason, Ronald.  The Spirit Above the Dust:  A Study of Herman Melville.London:  John  Lehman, 1951.
Mitchell, Charles. "Melville and the Spurious Truth of Legalism."  The Centennial Review 12.1  (Winter 1968):  110–26.
Mushabac, Jane.  Melville's Humor:  A Critical Study.Hamden:  Archon Books, 1981.
Pommer, Henry F. Milton and Melville.Pittsburgh:  U of Pittsburgh P, 1950.
Pops, Martin Leonard.The Melville Archetype.KentOhioKentState UP, 1970.
Rogin, Michael Paul.  Subversive Genealogy:  The Politics and Art of Herman Melville. New  York:  Alfred A. Knopf, 1983.
Rosenberry, Edward H. Melville and the Comic Spirit.Cambridge:  Harvard UP, 1955.
Schulman, Robert. "The Serious Function fo Melville's Phallic Jokes."  American Literature  33.2 ( (1961):  170–94.
Sedgewick, William Ellery.  Herman Melville:  The Tragedy of Mind.New York: Russel &Russel, 1944.
Seelye, John.  Melville:  The Ironic Diagram.Evanston:  Northwestern UP, 1970.
Zaller, Robert. "Melville and the Myth of Revolution.'  Studies in Romanticism 15 (Fall 1976)):   607–22.


Scorza, Thomas J. "Tragedy in the State of Nature."Interpretation 8.1 (January 1979):  103–20. Rpt. in Critical Essays on Herman Melville's Typee.  Milton R. Stern,edBoston:  G. K. Hall, 1982.226–243.
Abrams, Rober E.  "Typee and Omoo:  Herman Melville and the Ungraspable Phantom of  Identity." Arizona Quarterly 3 (Spring 1975).  Rpt. in Critical Essays on Herman  Melville'sTypee (see entry above), 201–210

White Jacket

Anderson, Charles Roberts. Melville in the South Seas. (see also for Typee)
Reynolds, Larry J. "Anti–Democratic Emphasis in White Jacket."   American Literature 48  March (1976)
Vincent, Howard P. The Tailoring of Melville's White Jacket.  (on reserve)

Moby Dick

Cowan, BainardExiled Waters:  Moby Dick and the Crisis of Allegory.Baton RougeLouisianaState UP, 1982.
Martin, Robert K.  Hero, Captain, and Stranger:  Male Friendship, Social Critique, and Literary  Form in the Sea Novels of Herman MelvilleChapel Hill:  U ofNorth Carolina P, 1986.
Smith, Gayle L.  ”The Word and the Thing:  Moby Dick and the Limits of Language.“  ESQ:  A  Journal of the American Renaissance 31.4 (1985):  260 71.
Zoellner, Robert.  The Salt Sea Mastodon:  A Reading of Moby Dick. Berkeley:  U of California  P, 1973.


Canady, Nickolas.  ”Pierre in the Domestic Circle.“  Studies in the Novel 18.4 (1986):  395 402.
Holder, Alan.  ”Style and Tone in Melville’sPierre.“ ESQ:  A Journal of the American   Renaissance 60 (1982):  76 86.
Wilson, James C.  ”The Sentimental Education of Pierre Glendinning:  An Exploration of the  Causes and Implications of Violence in Melville’s Pierre.“ American Transcendental  Quarterly 1.13 (1987):  167 77.

The Short Tales

Baines, Barbara J.  ”Ritualized Cannibalism in ”Benito Cereno’: Melville’s ‘Black letter’  Texts.“  ESQ:  A Journal of the American Renaissance 30. 3 (1984):  163 69.
Bickley, R. Bruce, Jr. The Method of Melville’s Short Fiction.Durham:  Duke UP, 1975.
Miller, Lewis H., Jr.  ”‘Bartleby’ and the Dead Letter.“ Studies in American Fiction 8 (1980):   1 12.
Rowland, Beryl.  ”Melville’s Bachelors and Maids:  Interpretation Through Symbol and   Metaphor.“  American Literature 41.3 (1969):  389 405.
Emery, Allan Moore.  ”‘Benito Cereno’ and Manifest Destiny.“  Nineteenth Century Fiction  39.1 (June 1984)): 48 68.
Hoffman, Charles G.  ”The Shorter Fiction of Herman Melville.“ South Atlantic Quarterly 52  (1953):  414 30.
Yellin, Jean Fagin.  ”Black Masks: Melville’s ‘Benito Cereno.’“  American Quarterly 22.3 (Fall  1970):  678 89.
Zagarell, Sandra A. ”ReenvisioningAmericaMelville’s ‘Benito Cereno.’“  ESQ:  A Journal of  the American Renaissance 30.4 (1984):  245 59.

The Confidence Man

Brodtkorb, Paul, Jr.  ”The Confidence Man:  The Con Man as Hero.“  Studies in the Novel 1.4  (Winter 1969):  421 35.
Bryant, John.  ”Allegory and Breakdown in The Confidence ManMelville’s Comedy of  Doubt.“  Philological Quarterly 65.1 1986):  113 30.
OvermeerRoelof.  ”‘Something Further’:  The Confdence Man and Writing as a Disinterested  Act.“ Etudes De Lettres (1987):  43 53.
Parker, Hershel.  ”Melville’s Satire of Emerson and Thoreau.“  American Transcendental  Quarterly 7 (Summer 1970):  61 67.
 . . ..  ”The Metaphysics of Indian hating.“  Nineteenth Century Fiction 8.2  (September 1963):
Ramsey, William M.  ”The Moot Points of Melville’s Indian Hating.“ New England Quarterly  52.2  (May 1980):  224 35.
ShroederJohw W.  ”Sources and Symbols for Melville’s Confidence Man.“  PMLA 66 (June  1951): 363 80.


Adler, Joyce Sparer. War in Melville's Imagination.New YorkNew York UP, 1981.
Georgoudaki, Catherine.  ”Battle Pieces and Aspects of the War:Melville’s Poetic Quest for  Meaning and Form in a Fallen World.“  American Transcendental Quarterly  (March  1987): 21 32.
Kramer, Aaron.Melville’s Poetry:  Toward the Enlarged Heart.Rutherford: Fairleigh  Dickinson UP, 1972.
Robillard, Douglas.  ”Theme and Structure in Melville’s John Marr and Other Sailors.English  Language Notes 6 (March 1969):  187 92.
ShetleyVernon. ”Melville’sTimoleon.’“ ESQ:  A Journal of the American Renaissance 33   (1987):  83 93.
Stein, William ByssheThe Poetry of Melville’s Late Years:  Time, History, Myth, and Religion.Albany:  State U of New York P, 1970.
Warren, Robert Penn. Introduction to Selected Poems of Heman Melville.New York:  Random   House, 1970.

Billy Budd

Brodtkorb, Paul, Jr.  ”The Definitive Billy Budd:  ‘But Aren’t it All Sham?’PMLA 82.7  (December 1967):  602 12.
Davis, R. Evan.  ”An Allegory of America in Melville’sBilly Budd.“  The Journal of Narrative  Technique 14.3 (Fall 1984):  172 81.
Durer, Christopher S.  ”Captain Vere and Upper Class Mores in Billy Budd.“  Studies in Short  Fiction (Winter 1982):  9 18.
Evans, Lyon, Jr.  ”‘Too Good to Be True’:  Subverting Christian Hope in Billy Budd.“ New  England Quarterly  55.3 (September 1982):  323 53.
Hays, Peter L., and Richard Dilworth Rust.  ”Something Healing:  Fathers and Sons in Billy  Budd.“  Nineteenth Century Fiction 34.3 (December 1979):  326 36.
Johnson, Barbara.  ”Melville’s Fist:  The Execution of Billy Budd.“  Studies in Romanticism 18.4  (Winter 1979):  567 99.
Parker, Hershel.Reading Billy Budd.Evanston:  Northwestern UP, 1990.
Rathburn, John W.  ”Billy Budd and the Limits of Perception.“  Nineteenth Century Fiction 20.1  (June 1965):  19 34.
Rosenberry, Edward H.  ”The Problem of Billy Budd,“ PMLA 80.5 (December 1965)  489 98.
Schiffman, Joseph.  ”Melville’s Final Stage, Irony:  A Re examination of Billy Budd Criticism.“ American Literature 22 (1950):  128 36.
Scorza, Thomas J.  In the Time Before Steamships:  Billy Budd, The Limits of Politics, and  ModernityDeKalbNorthern Illinois UP, 1979.
Zink, Karl E.  ”Herman Melville and the Forms  Irony and Social Criticism in Billy Budd.“   Accent 12 (Summer 1952):  131 39.

Other Sources for Melville study:

The standard scholarly editions of Melville work are the 15 volumes included in the Northwestern/Newberry editions, edited by Harrison Hayfor, Hershel Parker, et. al.  In addition to the published texts--novels, stories, and poems, two of the volumes contain Melville's letters and journals.  Each volume contains a historical and a textual note (essays) that are essential baseline research material.

The library recently began to subcribe to (but holds only the most recent numbers of Levithan: A Journal of Melville Studies and Melville Extracts (a newsletter), both published by The Herman Melville Society:  http://people.hofstra.edu/faculty/John_L_Bryant/Melville/soc.html