Herman Melville is among the most thoroughly canonized authors in American literature, and the body of criticism dealing with his writing is immense. Until now, however, there has been no standard volume on the history of Melville criticism. That a volume on this subject is timely and important is shown by the number of introductions and companions to Melville's work that have been published during the last few years [none of which focuses on the critical reception of Melville's works], as well as the steady stream of critical monographs and scholarly biographies that have been published on Melville since the 1920s. Melville's Mirrors provides Melville scholars and graduate and undergraduate students with an accessible guide to the story of Melville criticism as it has developed over the years. It is a valuable reference for research libraries and for the personal libraries of scholars of Melville and of nineteenth-century American literature in general, and it is also a potential textbook for major author courses on Melville, which are offered at many universities. BRIAN YOTHERS is Professor of English at the University of Texas at El Paso. He is author of The Romance of the Holy Land in American Travel Writing, 1790-1876 and co-editor of Journeys: The International Journal of Travel and Travel Writing.
An accessible and highly readable guide to the story of Melville criticism as it has developed over the past century and a half.
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