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.


Mother and baby sperm whale

Peter Martin - Ahab's Dream Exhibit


 Ahab's Dream - Art Exhibit
Peter Martin - Artist
New Bedford Whaling Museum
January - June, 2014

thumb Peter-Martin-Ahab's-Dream Peter Martin with Ahab's Dream
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Peter Martin, whose art work is being added to the New Bedford Whaling Museum archive this year, will be exhibiting a show of Moby-Dick paper cuts at the Moby-Dick Marathon at the New Bedford Whaling Museum from January to June, 2014. Concerning this exhibit of large scale paper and fiber cuttings inspired by Herman Melville's Moby-Dick, Peter shares that he feels that it best represents his journey as an artist. See our Event Calendar for more details.

thumb Peter-Martin-Ahabs-Dream Melville the Man
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Mark Milloff’s Melville - Art Exhibit


Drawings, Paintings, and Sculpture by Mark Milloff

September 22, 2013 – January 5, 2014

Lyman Allyn Art Museum - New London, CT


From the museum's website:

Milloff’s Melville features 25 years of Mark Milloff’s drawings, paintings, and sculpture inspired by Herman Melville’s epic novel Moby Dick.  A professor at the Rhode Island School of Design, Milloff has long been immersed in narratives of the sea. Growing up a stone’s throw from what he describes as “the murky canals and mangrove mudflats” of South Florida, Milloff developed an insatiable curiosity about creatures of the sea. That interest eventually provoked his obsession with Moby Dick, which became a potent resource for expressing his own state of mind, as well as plumbing the American imagination past and present. For more information visit the museum's website at http://www.lymanallyn.org/milloffs-melville/

Follow this link to a brief NPR interview with Mark Milloff:  http://wnpr.org/post/perils-sea-giant-pastels-capture-adventure-moby-dick

Battle-Pieces Song Cycle by Paul Phillips

Enjoy these performances of six songs from Paul Phillips' Civil War song cycle that are based on six poems published in Melville's "Battle-Pieces." Paul Phillips is Director of Orchestras and Chamber Music, Brown University, and Music Director and Conductor, Pioneer Valley Symphony & Chorus. The song cycle was premiered by baritone Andrew Garland with the Pioneer Valley Symphony under composer Paul Phillips' direction at John M. Greene Hall, Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts, on 16 October 2011. Music completed in 2011 and published by Barnard Street Music 2011©.

Premiere of Jake Heggie's Ahab Symphony

On April 24, 2013 the symphony and chorus of the University of North Texas gave the premiere of Jake Heggie's Ahab Symphony with Richard Croft singing the tenor part. The text of the symphony juxtaposes several lines from Ahab during the Third Day of the Chase (sung by the tenor) with the text of W. H. Auden's poem, "Herman Melville" (sung by the chorus).

Jake-Heggie-after-premiere-of-Ahab-SymphonyJake Heggie after the premiere of his Ahab Symphony
on April 24, 2013 with the symphony and chorus of
the University of North Texas

Immediately before the concert was the release book party for Dr. Robert Wallace's forthcoming book on Heggie's Moby-Dick opera: Heggie and Scheer's Moby-Dick: A Grand Opera for the Twenty-first Century.

Jake-Heggie-Karen-Almond-Robert-Wallace-Gene-Scheer-at-book-release-partyJake Heggie, Karen Almond, Robert Wallace, and Gene Scheer
at the book release party

Artist Matt Kish Visits Kentucky University

At the invitation of Professor Robert Wallace, artist Matt Kish visited Northern Kentucky University to spend time with Dr. Wallace's honors class and talk about how he has explored Moby-Dick through his art. Dr. Wallace has shared a link to Matt Kish's blog in which the artist recounts his day of sharing with  for students and faculty - including a "live drawing event" at which he produced original works of art in response to quotes from Moby-Dick. Click the image below to visit Matt Kish's "Every Page of Moby-Dick" blog.

Matt Kish - blog logo

A Moby Dick Card Game

Several Melville Society members have reported an interesting, new, Melville-inspired creative project: Moby Dick, or, the Card Game.

Click the following link to visit the Moby Dick, or, The Card Game Facebook page.

 Moby-Dick-the card game 1Moby-Dick-the card game

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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.