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Melville : the making of the poet

Author: Hershel Parker
Publisher: Evanston, Ill. : Northwestern University Press, ©2008.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
""Poetry was just a sideline with Melville; it was never important to him," pronounced Alfred Kazin, in a judgment frequently echoed by critics today. In this study, Hershel Parker shows that, on the contrary, Melville was enthralled by poetry for much of his life and wrote almost nothing else for a third of a century." "Parker demonstrates that from childhood Melville was steeped in British poetry from Spenser to  Read more...
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Genre/Form: Criticism, interpretation, etc
Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Parker, Hershel.
Melville.
Evanston, Ill. : Northwestern University Press, ©2008
(OCoLC)608411228
Named Person: Herman Melville; Herman Melville; Herman Melville
Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Hershel Parker
ISBN: 9780810124646 0810124645
OCLC Number: 141484496
Description: x, 238 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Melville's lost books and the trajectory of his career as poet --
A poet in prose: how critics prepared Melville to think of himself as a poet --
Melville as hearer and reciter of poetry --
The omnipresence of poetry, 1820s-1848 --
The renewed power of poetry in Melville's life, 1849-1856 --
The status of poetry and the temptation of flunkeyism --
A nonpartisan becoming a poet during the Risorgimento --
Melville's progress as poet, 1857 to May 1860 --
Possible contents of poems (1860), --
On the meteor: Melville when he thought he was a published poet --
His verse still unpublished, Melville defines himself as poet, 1861-1862 --
Battle-pieces and aspects of the war: Melville's second volume of poems.
Responsibility: Hershel Parker.
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Abstract:

Gives an account of how one of America's greatest writers grew into the vocation of a poet. This work aims to correct two of the most pernicious misconceptions about Herman Melville perpetuated by  Read more...

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"With astonishingly far-reaching attention to the pertinent specifics of poems and prose commentaries by English and American writers who influenced Melville, Parker re-creates the poetic education Read more...

 
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    schema:reviewBody """Poetry was just a sideline with Melville; it was never important to him," pronounced Alfred Kazin, in a judgment frequently echoed by critics today. In this study, Hershel Parker shows that, on the contrary, Melville was enthralled by poetry for much of his life and wrote almost nothing else for a third of a century." "Parker demonstrates that from childhood Melville was steeped in British poetry from Spenser to Byron, including dozens of poets now little read even by specialists. In 1849 Melville's ecstatic study of Shakespeare renewed his love of poetry just as he was becoming a great prose writer. Rereading Milton and Spenser, he experienced them with such recharged intensity that he became passionately immersed in Wordsworth, Tennyson, the Brownings, and other modern poets as well. Parker explores the author's marginalia, much of it previously unknown, to elucidate Melville's shrewd, skeptical engagement with British poetry and with commentaries by poets, aestheticians, art historians, and the great Scottish reviewers." "Revealed here is an unknown Melville, the autodidact who made himself a poet and who brilliantly constructed a personal aesthetic credo. Dispelling baseless claims that Melville had a quarrel with fiction after Moby-Dick (or Pierre) and that he did not, in 1860, complete a book he called Poems, Parker offers new evidence of the full trajectory of Melville's career in all its glory and frustration."--Jacket." ;
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