Call for Papers
ALA 2017, Boston, MA.
May 25-28 2017
Organized by the Melville Society
Melville and the Historical Imagination
This panel will focus on Melville’s varied engagements with history and historical transformation. How does Melville imagine the emplotment of History; its causal forces, determinant conjunctures, or contingent ruptures? How does Melville make use of the aesthetic dimensions of historical thought, and how does his work innovate narrative and poetic forms, literary genres, or dramatic modes in its exploration of historical representation? How does Melville’s work engage with histories of colonialism and imperialism, of laws and nation-states? Finally, how are these engagements related to Melville’s treatment of other social issues, such as class, race, gender, and sexuality? Topics include: aesthetic, political, and rhetorical dimensions of historical imagination; historical materialism and dialectics; determinism and agency; history and theory of the novel; uneven development; colonialism and imperialism; law and sovereignty.
Melville and Literary Influence: Reframing Tradition