CFP: [American] Moby-Dick: Genesis, Influence, and Intention (12/15/07; ALA, 5/22/08-5/25/08)

full name / name of organization: 
Steven Olsen-Smith
contact email: 

Long a topic of shrewd but unverified speculation, the prospect that Moby-
Dick underwent a radical transformation in manuscript has received new
attention in recent scholarship by Robert Sattelmeyer (ESQ 49 [2003], 213-
47) and Melville's Marginalia Online ( The
complex transmission of Moby-Dick from manuscript to print is likewise
newly illuminated by the Longman Critical Edition edited by John Bryant
and Haskell Springer, which highlights the work's multiple revision sites
to acknowledge its unstable text and incidents of both refinement and
censorship during proofing and editing. The renewed attention to genesis
and publication keeps pace with continuing scholarship on the impact of
Melville's reading and sources on his masterwork, the influence of his
personal relationships, his development of subversive rhetorical
strategies, his conflicting aims for artistic greatness and financial
success, and the extent to which Melville's intentions for Moby-Dick were
enabled or thwarted by material and ideological conventions of 19th-
century print production. The Melville Society invites papers on one or
any combination of the above topics for presentation at the American
Literature Association's 19th annual conference in San Francisco, from
May 22 to 25, 2008. Send 400-500 word abstracts by email attachment to
the session chair Steven Olsen-Smith at by
December 15, 2007.

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Received on Mon Sep 24 2007 - 16:51:41 EDT