Visionary of the Word brings together the latest scholarship on Herman Melville's treatment of religion across his long career as a writer of fiction and poetry. The volume suggests the broad range of Melville's religious concerns, including his engagement with the denominational divisions of American Christianity, his dialogue with transatlantic currents in nineteenth-century religious thought, his consideration of theological and philosophical questions related to the problem of evil and determinism versus free will, and his representation of the global contact among differing faiths and cultures. These essays constitute a capacious response to the many avenues through which Melville interacted with religious faith, doubt, and secularization throughout his career, advancing our understanding of Melville as a visionary interpreter of religious experience who remains resonant in our own religiously complex era.
Jonathan A. Cook is chair of the English department at Middleburg Academy in Middleburg,Virginia, USA.
Brian Yothers is the Frances Spatz Leighton Endowed Distinguished Professor of Englishat the University of Texas at El Paso, USA.
"This insightful collection of essays on Herman Melville and religion comes at an opportune time for both Melville studies and the study of religion more generally. The editors have gathered a fine group of scholars well-suited to take advantage of new developments in both fields." --Liam Corley, author of Bayard Taylor: Determined Dreamer of America's Rise, 1825--1878
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