The Melville Society is dedicated to the study and appreciation of the nineteenth-century American author Herman Melville, writer of Typee, Moby-Dick, and Billy Budd, such short stories as “Bartleby” and “Benito Cereno,” and several volumes of poetry, including Battle-Pieces and the epic Clarel
We publish the award-winning journal Leviathan which all membes receive three times a year and which offers scholarly articles, book and art reviews, Society news, and Melville-related events. Membership is open to all. For information about Leviathan and joining The Melville Society click here.

The Eaton Portrait

Herman Melville JOEaton 95ppi 250wBy permission of Houghton Library, Harvard University: 61Z-4

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Melville Electronic Library

mel-thumb-crpd-3The Melville Electronic Library is an online resource for Melville texts. Housed on a Hofstra University server, MEL is being developed and maintained by a group of Melville scholars and digital specialists.

Johns Hopkins University Press

jhup-logoTo join the Melvillle Society and subscribe to Leviathan, visit Leviathan's Johns Hopkins University Press journal site by clicking here.

Melville Society Cultural Project

Melville Society and New Bedford Whaling Museum Cultural Project The New Bedford Whaling Museum in collaboration with The Melville Society is the established home of the Melville Society Cultural Project and Melville Society Archive. The Melville Society Archive is housed at the New Bedford Whaling Museum's Research Library, where significant works from this collection are also on display. The Melville Society Cultural Project also sponsors a book donation program and presents exciting annual events including the Moby-Dick Marathon and a Birthday Lecture.

Herman Melville's Arrowhead

BHS FB HM portraitHerman Melville's Arrowhead Facebook Group page of the Berkshire Historical Society. Celebrating historical Berkshire County and Herman Melville's Arrowhead, the farm and home where Melville lived while writing Moby-Dick.

Melville Society at San Francisco Opera for Moby-Dick

Jake Heggie and Gene Scheer

 Saturday, October 13, 2012 at 8 pm

San Francisco Opera

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The Melville Society and San Francisco Opera invite you to Moby-Dick on Saturday, October 13 at 8 pm. San Francisco Opera is pleased to offer Melville Society members a special 20% off tickets. To purchase tickets, visit: www.sfopera.com/offers – be sure to enter code: MELVILLE20

On Thursday, October 11, two days prior to the October 13, 8 pm performance, there will be a Symposium on the "Moby-Dick" opera with composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer. It will be led by Samuel Otter (English Dept., Berkeley), Robert K. Wallace (English Dept., Northern Kentucky University), and John Kapusta (Music Dept., Berkeley). The Thursday October 11 Symposium will begin at 3 pm at 315 Wheeler Hall, University of California, Berkeley. The Symposium will likely be followed by a performance by one of the singers. Everyone is welcome.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that this masterpiece of American literature has been transformed into “a vibrant, compelling piece of musical theater” by Dead Man Walking composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer. A cast of brilliant singing actors is led by Ben Heppner as the fierce, obsessive whaling-boat captain whose descent into madness puts his crew in mortal danger. “It would be difficult to imagine a performer better suited to convey Ahab’s complex mix of demoniac compulsion and fleeting heroism,” raved The New York Times, which also praised conductor Patrick Summers’ “lyrical flow and suitably stormy climaxes.” Discount is available through the special offer web page only, not by phone or in person, and expires Friday, October 12, 2012 at 11:59pm. This offer is not valid on previously purchased tickets. We strongly suggest you order early as performances often sell out. Seating is assigned at the time of purchase and is not reserved in advance for this offer.

If you plan to come, you may wish to order tickets soon.


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Upcoming Conferences and Events


Fellowships and Scholarships

Melville Society Archive
Walter E. Bezanson Fellowship
The Melville Society, under the auspices of the Melville Society Cultural Project in New Bedford, offers an annual fellowship to help a scholar undertake research on Herman Melville at the Society’s Archive in the Research Library of the Whaling Museum in New Bedford, Massachusetts.


Click here for more information and application details.


New York Public Library
Short-term Research Fellowships


Graduate students or other affiliated academics whose work would benefit from visiting the Manuscripts and Archives Division to view collections such as the Gansevoort-Lansing collection, and Duyckinck family papers are encouraged to apply.


Click here for more information and application details.

From Our Photo Collections

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Woodlawn Cemetary

WoodlawnWoodlawn Cemetary - final resting place of Herman, his wife, Elizabeth, and other family members. Click here to view photos of the gravesites.

125th Anniversary Celebration

125th Woodlawn

A celebration of Melville's life at Woodlawn Cemetary on the 125th anniversary of his passing.

Lansingburgh Historical Society

Melville House

Melville lived for nine years in this Lansingburgh house. It was here that he wrote Typee and Omoo

Berkshire Historical Society

ArrowheadMelville's Arrowhead home and farm in Pittsfield, MA where he wrote Moby-Dick and lived for most of the 1850s.