Melville and the Pacific

Third International Melville Conference

Full Schedule

Tuesday 6/3 | Wednesday 6/4 | Thursday 6/5 | Friday 6/6 | Saturday 6/7 | Full Schedule

Tuesday 6/3
8:30–10:00 am


1: Biography News
Moderator: Lyon Evans, Viterbo College

Melville in Mazatlán
Laurie Robertson-Lorant
Masssachsetts Institute of Technology and University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth

Mapping the Marquesas for Typee
Sanford E. Marovitz
Kent State University

Was Herman Melville Ever Really in the Typee Valley?
Mary K. Bercaw Edwards
Mystic Seaport

Tuesday 6/3
10:00–10:30 am


Coffee Break

Tuesday 6/3
10:30 am–12:00 pm


2: Forms of Culture/Forms of Narrative
Moderator: Randall Waller, Baylor University

Island Queens: “Her Majesty” and Power in Melville’s South Pacific
Juniper Ellis
Loyola College

“The Wreckage of Races”: Melville, London, and the Death of Typee
Jeanne Campbell Reesman
University of Texas at San Antonio

“Facts. . . picked up in the Pacific”: Fragmentation, Deformation, and the (Cultural) Uses of Enchantment in Melville’s The Encantadas
Christopher Sten
George Washington University


3: Colonial and Imperial Ways: Omoo
Moderator: Bryan Short, Northern Arizona University

King of the Cannibals: Melville’s Pacific Polysensuum
Tim Marr
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

After Conversion: Non-Normative Character in Omoo
Carol Colatrella
Georgia Institute of Technology

Omoo: A Narration of Transgression and the Ideology of Civilization
Jincai Yang
Nanjing University, China

Tuesday 6/3
12:00–12:30 pm


Lunch Break

Tuesday 6/3
1:30–3:00 pm


4: The Business of Whaling and Other “Heroic” Competitions
Moderator: TBA

Negotiations: Melville and the French in Polynesia
Brigitte Weltman-Aron
University of Memphis

“Duty and Profit Hand in Hand”: Melville, Whaling, and the Failure of Heroic Materialism
John T. Matteson
John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Melville’s Contextual Genius: Moby-Dick and the Business of Whaling
Laura Saunders
Columbia University


5: Imag(in)ing Hawai’i
Moderator: TBA

America Encounters Hawai’i: Gender, Aggressive Expansionism, and Travel Writing, 1848-1860
Amy S. Greenberg
Pennsylvania State University

“Depraved and Vicious”/Urbane and Domestic: Herman Melville, Elizabeth Sanders, and the Hawai’ians
Charlene Avallone
Conference Co-Chair

Melville and Native Hawai’ians
Ka’imipono Kaiwi
Kamehameha Schools and University of Auckland

Tuesday 6/3
3:15–4:45 pm


6: Resources for Research 1
Keone Freeland
The Lahaina Restoration Foundation

Tuesday 6/3
5:00–6:30 pm


Oceanside Pupu Reception & Welcome
Walter Bezanson reading “The Pacific”

Wednesday 6/4
8:30 am–10:00 am


7: Asia and Melville
Moderator: Dragan Kujundzic, University of California, Irvine

Strike through the Unreasoning Masks: Moby-Dick and Japan
Ikuno Saiki

Herman Melville, Matthew Perry, and the Narrative of an Expedition of an American Squadron to the China Seas and Japan
Dorsey Kleitz
Tokyo Woman’s Christian University, Japan

“The subordinate phantoms”: Melville’s Conflicted Response to Asia in Moby-Dick
Elizabeth Schultz
University of Kansas


8: Making Meaning(s) of the Pacific
Moderator: TBA

Pacific Culture and the Ironization of Vision in Typee
Anne Baker
North Carolina State University

The Humblest of Men: Ahab’s Modest Pursuit of Moby-Dick
Kim Leilani Evans
University of Redlands

The Epistemology of Mapping and the Problems of Writing in Melville’s Pacific Fictions
Christopher N. Phillips
Stanford University

Wednesday 6/4
10:00–10:30 am


Coffee Break

Wednesday 6/4
10:30 am–12:00 pm


9: Constructing and Reconstructing Sexualities
Moderator: William R. Davis, Kamuela, Hawai’i

Melville’s Pacific Experience, Eros, and History
Robert Milder
Washington University

Billy Budd and the Languages for Homosexuality
Kathy Phillips
University of Hawai’i at Manoa

Melville and the Construction of the South Seas
Robert K. Martin
Université de Montréal, Canada


10: After the Pacific
Moderator: TBA

The Breadfruit Tree as Whale: Melville’s Polynesian Discoveries in Character, Voice and Symbol
R. Bruce Bickley, Jr.
Florida State University

Poem as Palm: Polynesia and Melville’s Turn to Poetry
Warren Rosenberg
Wabash College

Magic and Art in Melville’s Timoleon, etc.
Douglas Robillard
University of New Haven (retired)

Wednesday 6/4
12:00–12:30 pm


Lunch Break

Wednesday 6/4
1:30–3:00 pm


11: Pacific Contacts, Relationship, and Tropes
Moderator: TBA

Melville and Pacific Friendships
Paul Lyons
University of Hawai’i at Manoa

Is it down in any map?: Space and American Symbolism in Melville’s Typee and Omoo
Cinzia Schiavini
University of Milan, Italy

Taipivai: The Psychogeography of Islands and Beaches
Vanessa Smith
University of Sydney, Australia


12: Cannibals All?
Moderator: TBA

“Cannibals? who is not a cannibal?”: Melville’s Responses to “Popular Fictons” on Cannibalism
Gregory Paul Grewell
University of Arizona

Melvillean Survivals
Tony McGowan
United States Military Academy

The Gender of the Savage: Melville’s Peeping into the Landscape of an Alternative Sexuality in Typee
Erika Valsecchi
University of Nevada

Wednesday 6/4
3:30–5:00 pm


Historical Walking Tour
The Walking Tour is also available Thursday and Saturday

Wednesday 6/4
7:15–9:15 pm


Moby-Dick and Multicultural Democracy: A Dramatic Reading and Discussion

Carolyn Karcher
Temple University (retired)
Baldwin High School Auditorium, Kahului

Thursday 6/5
8:30–10:00 am


13: Natural Harmonies
Moderator: R. Bruce Bickley, Jr., Florida State University

Looking Back: Melville’s Ecological Vision in Moby-Dick and Other Pacific Tales
Leland S. Person
University of Cincinnati

Queequeg and Quinn: Melville’s “Undiscovered Prime” Tribalism
Jill Barnum Gidmark
University of Minnesota

Rozoko in the Pacific: Melville’s “Literary [and Other] Remains”
Wyn Kelley
Masssachsetts Institute of Technology


14: Death and Mourning, Decay, Rot, and Absence in the Pacific
Moderator: TBA

“The Great Shroud of the Sea Rolled On”: Counter-Mourning in Moby-Dick
Dana Luciano
Hamilton College

The Thematics of Polynesian Rot: From Melville to Yamanaka
Bruce A. Harvey
Florida International University

Pacific Decay and “Signs of Vanishing Humanity”
Hsuan L. Hsu
University of California, Berkeley

The Tranquility of the Ocean, or On Melville’s Pacifier(s)
Pawel Jedrzejko
Institute of British and American Culture and Literature, University of Silesia in Katowice

Thursday 6/5
10:00 am–10:30 am


Coffee Break and a few words about upcoming international Melville conferences from:

  • Robert K. Wallace, University of Kansas and Melville Society Cultural Project
  • Pawel Jedrzejko, University of Silesia in Katowice

Thursday 6/5
10:30 am–12:00 pm


15: Resources for Research 2
Slide Lecture: Representations of the Pacific

Karen Thompson
Curator of Education
Honolulu Academy of Art

Thursday 6/5
12:00–12:30 pm


Lunch Break

Thursday 6/5
1:30–3:00 pm


16: Melville’s Texts and Art Intertexts
Moderator: TBA

“Interiors Measurelessly Strange”: Melville and Piranesi
Samuel Otter
University of California, Berkeley

A New Version of Moby-Dick Chapter 55, “Of The Monstrous Pictures of Whales”
Haskell Springer
University of Kansas

Melville’s Pacific in Stella’s Art
Robert K. Wallace
Northern Kentucky University

The Image of the Whale in Herman Melville and Wyland’s Works
Lilia F. Khabibullina
Kazan State University, Russia


17: Melville in Company: Milton, Poe, Sedgwick, and Merwin
Moderator: TBA

A Different Version of Eden: Typee, Paradise Lost and the Satanic Predicament
Leslie Sheldon
University of Strathclyde, Scotland

Travels in the Interior: Typee, Pym, and the Limits of Transculturation
Susan Fanning

Teaching Moby-Dick and Literature of the Sea
Lucinda Damon-Bach
Salem State College

Taking the Polynesians to Heart: Melville’s Typee and Merwin’s The Folding Cliffs
Wendy Stallard Flory

Thursday 6/5
3:30–5:00 pm


Historical Walking Tour

Friday 6/6
8:30–10:00 am


18: Japanese Perspectives on Melville
Moderator: A. Robert Lee, Nihon University, Japan

Commodore Perry as White Phantom over Bakumatsu Japan
Arimichi Makino
Meiji University, Japan

Locating Native Americans in The Confidence-Man
Yukiko Oshima
Fukuoka University, Japan

Between Mammals: A Buddhist Reading of Cannibalism in The Encantadas
Tomoyuki Zettsu
Tokyo Gakugei University, Japan


19: Gender Matters
Moderator: TBA

Saving Face: Tattooing and White Manhood in Melville’s Typee
Jennifer Putzi
College of William and Mary

Failed Recognitions: The Hidden Woman in Melville
Claudia Dixon
CUNY Graduate Center

Melville’s Gendered Sea
Rita Bode
Trent University, Canada

Friday 6/6
10:00–10:30 am


Coffee Break

Friday 6/6
10:30 am–12:00 pm


20: Literature/History/Nation
Moderator: TBA

Of Mimicry and Masques: “Benito Cereno” and the National Allegory
Kevin Goddard
Vista University, South Africa

Nation and Encyclopaedic Narrative: Moby-Dick and Gravity’s Rainbow
Antonio Barrenechea
Yale University

Teaching Moby-Dick Post-September 11
Carolyn Karcher
Temple University (retired)


21: Speaking (of) the Pacific: Melville’s Turns of Language
Moderator: Dragan Kujundzic, University of California, Irvine

Towards an Ethnohistory of Speaking: Maritime Polynesian Pidgin in Herman Melville’s Pacific Novels
Emanuel Drechsel
University of Hawai’i at Manoa

Speaking Atlantic, Speaking Pacific: Typee and the Drama of Voice
A. Robert Lee
Nihon University, Japan

Acts of the Apostles: Culture and Conversion in Omoo
Alex Calder
University of Auckland, Australia

Friday 6/6
12:00–12:30 pm


Lunch Break

Friday 6/6
1:30–3:00 pm


22: Melville and the Oceanic Tattoo
Moderator: Stanley Orr, California Baptist University

Typee as Tattoo
Matt Rollins and Martin Kevorkian
University of Texas, Austin

Lines of Dissent: Oceanic Tattoo and the Colonial Contest
Stanley Orr
California Baptist University

Kakau i ka uhi
(presentation and tattooing demonstration)
Keone Nunes
Ta Tatau: Pacific Island Tattoo Association

Friday 6/6
3:30–5:00 pm


23: Resources for Research 3–Invited Lecture
The History of Hawai’ians

Jonathan Kay Kamakawiwo’ole Osorio
Center for Hawai’ian Studies, University of Hawai’i

Saturday 6/7
9:00–10:30 am


24: Revisiting Biographical and Critical Traditions
Moderator: TBA

Historicism and Melville Studies
Glenn Grasso
University of New Hampshire

From Typee to Omoo: Reconsidering Melville’s Antebellum Reception
James L. Machor
Kansas State University

Post-WWII Japanese Gamming with Herman Melville
Yuji Kato
Tokyo University of Foreign Studies, Japan


25: Peeps at Polynesia: Melville and Forms of Vision
Moderator: TBA

Surviving the Peep-Show: Survivor Marquesas as Adaptation of Melville’s Typee
Cheryl Edelson
University of California, Riverside

Sexuality and Star-Gazing: Fayaway meets Urania
Renee Bergland
Simmons College

Peeping into Polynesian Memorials: Melville’s Typee and the Limitations of Ordering Visions
Ian S. Maloney
St. Francis College

Saturday 6/7
10:00–10:30 am


Coffee Break

Saturday 6/7
10:45 am–12:15 pm


26: Pacific Experiences/European Poetics
Moderator: Milton Reigelman, Centre College

Touching Paradise: Romantic Landscapes in Melville’s Poetry
Faith Barrett
California State University, Pomona

“Could I but draw in crayons”: Sublime Grief and Picturesque Narration in the Hunilla Sketch
Peter Balaam
Princeton University

Of Whales and Men in the Pacific Garden of Eden
Carla Cappetti
City College of New York


27: Melville Rewrites the Pacific (or Not): Revision, Sources, and Politics
Moderator: TBA

Revising the Publishing History of the Revised Edition of Typee: The Pacific Link
Randall Cluff
Southern Virginia University

“A Work I Have Never Happened to Meet”: Revision and Appropriation in Typee and the Shaping of Imperial Discourse
John Bryant
Hofstra University

Plagiarizing Polynesia: A Postcolonial Rethinking of Melville’s Omoo Borrowings
Bryan C. Short
Northern Arizona University

Mardi’s Inferno: Imagining Politics in the South Pacific
Dennis Berthold
Texas A&M University

Saturday 6/7
12:45 pm


Luncheon Banquet

Saturday 6/7
3:00–4:30 pm


Historical Walking Tour

Tuesday 6/3 | Wednesday 6/4 | Thursday 6/5 | Friday 6/6 | Saturday 6/7 | Full Schedule