Northwestern University Library.jpg

Mary Bercaw

William Ellis Lives On

I came upon a volume of William Ellis’s Polynesian Researches in a bookshop last week in Oakland, CA. Thanks to the work of scholarly sleuths like the late Harrison Hayford, we know that Ellis was Melville’s major source for Omoo. Mary K. Bercaw notes how Harrison Hayford was even able to identify the edition Melville used:

Melville characteristically appropriated into his own works blocks of writing from other works whose origin is so clear that the source-hunter can identify not only Melville’s source but also the very edition he used. The “fingerprints” by which scholars make such identifications with confidence include peculiar wording, errors in titles or dates, and misspellings that Melville copied without changing. With such fingerprints, Harrison Hayford was able to identify the 1833 Harper edition of William Ellis’s Polynesian Researches as the major source for Melville’s second book Omoo. Hayford based his identification on internal evidence (evidence found within Melville’s writing); there is no external evidence of Melville’s having used Ellis: no surviving volume owned by Melville, no library slip, no sales receipt. ((Bercaw, Mary K. “A Fine, Boisterous Something”: Nantucket in Moby-Dick. http://www.nha.org/history/hn/HN-fall1991-bercaw.html))

Like many others who have discovered the convenience of digital books available online through Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes and Noble’s Nook, I am in the process of thinning out my book collection, keeping only what can never be digitally replaced. Books like this modern edition of Ellis are best had and appreciated in their three-dimensional analog form. They will survive my bibliographic cull.

Hopefully this colorfully bound edition of Ellis will be there available for purchase when I return next to Oakland.

Share
Calendar
May 2019
M T W T F S S
« Oct    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  
Archives
Politics, Culture, Philosophy
  • Rachel Maddow
  • Frank Schaeffer
  • Roberto Ruiz

Freedom Caucus condemns its own member over impeachment assessmentIn 2015, the House Freedom Caucus was a reactionary thorn in the Republican establishment's sid [...]

Trump contradicts his allies' claims on Iran, security threatsIn reference to Iranian aggression, Trump said he's seen "no indication that anything has [...]

Trying to keep Trump's finances secret, his lawyers fail miserablyTrump's lawyers failed miserably to block a subpoena sent to his accounting firm. The president [...]

Did Team Trump direct Michael Cohen to lie to Congress?We've reached the point at which Trump World lawyers themselves have been accused of possibly c [...]

New White House stonewalling intensifies impeachment pushThe former White House counsel may be able to shed light on Trump alleged crimes, but Trump is silen [...]

Nadler calls out White House, DOJ for specious legal argumentRachel Maddow talks with Lawrence O'Donnell about the Trump administration's effort to bol [...]

Extreme anti-abortion laws spark reproductive rights protestsDr. Leana Wen, president and CEO of Planned Parenthood, talks with Rachel Maddow about how American [...]

Trump court loss a crack in wall hiding Trump financesRep. Adam Schiff talks with Rachel Maddow about the need to follow Donald Trump's money where R [...]

Cohen transcript puts spotlight on Trump Tower Moscow deceptionRep. Adam Schiff talks with Rachel Maddow about themes in the transcript of Michael Cohen's tes [...]

Trump tactics to conceal his finances begin to fall apartRachel Maddow highlights reporting in the New York Times about suspicious activity reports prepared [...]

The last time I saw Mark Zuckerberg was in the summer of 2017, several months before the Cambridge A [...]

“Biden and Sanders come across as romantics. Biden- stuck in the past, when real bipartisanship some [...]

The woman who blew open the Cambridge Analytica scandal says Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey are ‘ha [...]

It’s very early in the race to 2020, and there are a lot of wonderful candidates on the Democratic s [...]

Trump, Assange, Bannon, Farage… bound together in an unholy allianceby Carole Cadwalladr The WikiLea [...]

Watch this! You won’t find a more compelling argument today for the need for human decency, being ki [...]

It seems fantastical that a 37-year-old openly gay mayor from South Bend can even be in this convers [...]

Pete Buttigieg has a long-term generational view. He is not reacting to the media outrage cycle of t [...]

Maria Ressa, chief of Philippine news site Rappler, was released on bail after being arrested at an [...]

THE MUELLER REPORT DID NOT EXONERATE TRUMP OF Self-dealing Trump family corruption Cheating on taxes [...]

After having been unjustly convicted of the bogus charges brought against him in that most infamous [...]

The Philosophy of Christopher NolanEver since I first watched Memento and its fascinating exploration of the philosophical question of [...]

Voltaire - CandideThe philosophical problem of evil—the question of how the existence of unnecessary suffering is poss [...]

Arrow - A Celebration of LoveLife is hard enough as it is. Existence, in many ways, is suffering. Obviously, some have it much wo [...]

If 'Despacito' Were Written by an Evo-Devo BiologistIf you are a geek, you are likely to get excited over things others might find boring, laughable, la [...]

James Baldwin Debates William F. BuckleyJames Baldwin, the great essayist, poet, civil rights activist, writer and orator, would have turned [...]

Genius of the Ancient World - SocratesFew figures have been more important and influential in the history of civilization than the ancient [...]

The PresocraticsAnyone who's ever contemplated Raphael's celebrated painting The School of Athens knows th [...]

President Obama's Farewell AddressAs his presidency sadly comes to an end, President Obama delivered last night what is sure to become [...]

John Berger - Ways of SeeingArt critic John Berger's recent death has left a huge void in the world of art appreciation. Wh [...]

Right Living, Thinking, Etc
  • Two Truths News
  • Natural Living-Healthy Planet

Shine the warm light of awareness on your thoughts and feelings, says Thich Nhat Hanh. The post The [...]

When the Buddha taught us to abstain from taking life, he didn’t make an exception for animals we li [...]

Each Friday, we share three topical longreads in our Weekend Reader newsletter. This week, LionsRoar [...]

Buddhism teaches us that the buddhas can appear in different bodies. Finn Enke chronicles a lifelong [...]

A cup of tea or coffee is a nice break. Drinking it mindfully is a real break. Joseph Emet teaches u [...]

"No one who has ever touched liberation could possibly want anything other than liberation for [...]

A group of prominent Buddhist nuns has asked the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tra [...]

57-year-old Sutham Nateetong plans to complete his 3,000 mile journey by the end of June. The post B [...]

A new report from Religion News Service details financial troubles facing the Shambhala Buddhist com [...]

Three teachers respond to the question: How would you counsel someone who is considering getting an [...]

(Natural News) Before the global warming era, which began sometime during the 1980s, there was a dif [...]

(Natural News) No one would argue that getting cancer is a stroke of bad luck — but is that really t [...]

(Natural News) If you’re concerned about diabetes, the first thing your doctor might suggest is gett [...]

(Natural News) If you go out in the woods today, you’re in for a big surprise. That line from a favo [...]

(Natural News) We live in a time where we have all manner of modern conveniences, but many of them a [...]

(Natural News) About three decades have passed since scientists made the devastating discovery that [...]

(Natural News) Many developing countries around the world rely heavily on traditional medicine; howe [...]

(Natural News) A study in the Journal of Essential Oil Research evaluated the chemical composition a [...]

(Natural News) Perhaps the best-known and healthiest yoga pose is the downward-facing dog pose. It i [...]

(Natural News) You woke up early with your morning workout already planned. The moment you get out o [...]

Science News
  • The Universe Today
  • Perimeter Institute
  • Science Daily
  • Sky and Telescope

A new study by an astrophysicist and a professor of ethics takes a look at the future of humanity in [...]

Welcome to the 612th Carnival of Space! The Carnival is a community of space science and astronomy w [...]

A planetary nebula is one of the most beautiful objects in the universe. Formed from the decaying re [...]

In the ongoing search for intelligent life, a new study recommends that we look for signs of an adva [...]

Sad fact of the Universe is that all stars will die, eventually. And when they do, what happens to t [...]

What is dark matter made of? It’s one of the most perplexing questions of modern astronomy. We know [...]

The Beresheet lander came oh-so-close to touching down on the surface of the Moon, but something wen [...]

The Moon’s going to have more human visitors in the year 2024. NASA has announced that their mission [...]

Hosts: Fraser Cain (universetoday.com / @fcain) Dr. Kimberly Cartier (KimberlyCartier.org / @AstroKi [...]

Anna Golubeva wins NSERC Brassard PrizeTuesday May 07, 2019Perimeter PhD student Anna Golubeva is ho [...]

New Simons Emmy Noether Fellows announcedFriday Mar 08, 2019Perimeter is set to welcome the next gro [...]

New Perimeter Institute Director among world’s most influential scientistsWednesday Feb 27, 2019Robe [...]

CONDENSED MATTER THEORIST CHONG WANG JOINS FACULTYFriday Feb 22, 2019For Perimeter’s newest faculty [...]

Perimeter researchers continue hot streak in Buchalter Cosmology Prize competitionWednesday Jan 09, [...]

New fellowships to fuel fundamental physics with radio telescopes in Canada Thursday Dec 20, 2018Per [...]

2018: Perimeter's scientific year in reviewMonday Dec 17, 2018As another year draws to a close, [...]

Perimeter ramps up efforts to support greater diversityFriday Nov 30, 2018Perimeter has taken anothe [...]

Exploring the physics all around usTuesday Nov 13, 2018From climate change to gravitational waves, t [...]

LUKE SANTI AWARD WINNER CULTIVATES CURIOSITY AND GRITWednesday Nov 07, 2018Aidan Richards, a first-y [...]

Formation of the moon brought water to EarthEarth has a large amount of water and a relatively large moon, which stabilizes Earth's axis. B [...]

Anxiety might be alleviated by regulating gut bacteriaPeople who experience anxiety symptoms might be helped by taking steps to regulate the microorganism [...]

Bonobo mothers help their sons to have more offspringNew research finds that bonobo mothers take action to ensure their sons will become fathers. This wa [...]

'Spider-like senses' could help autonomous machines see betterResearchers are building 'spidey senses' into the shells of autonomous cars and drones so [...]

Synthetic biologists hack bacterial sensorsSynthetic biologists have hacked bacterial sensing with a plug-and-play system that could be used to [...]

Counter-intuitive climate change solutionA seemingly counterintuitive approach -- converting one greenhouse gas into another -- holds promise [...]

How Earth's mantle is like a Jackson Pollock paintingNew research paints an intricate picture of Earth's mantle as a geochemically diverse mosaic, f [...]

Giant impact caused difference between Moon's hemispheresThe stark difference between the Moon's heavily-cratered farside and the lower-lying open basin [...]

Gas insulation could be protecting an ocean inside PlutoComputer simulations provide compelling evidence that an insulating layer of gas hydrates could keep [...]

Dietary cholesterol or egg consumption do not increase the risk of stroke, Finnish study findsA new study Finland shows that a moderately high intake of dietary cholesterol or consumption of up [...]

The post NGC 891 (also known as Caldwell 23 and Silver Sliver Galaxy) appeared first on Sky & Te [...]

The post Another Kind of “Blue” Moon appeared first on Sky & Telescope. [...]

The post The Dumbbell Nebula (also known as Apple Core Nebula, Messier 27, M 27, or NGC 6853) appear [...]

New research shows that our quiet, middle-aged galaxy used to be quite the firecracker — a couple bi [...]

The Moon, nearly full, shines in dim Libra. Find Arcturus very high above the Moon. Less far to the [...]

In Sky & Telescope's July 2019 issue, we focus on the Moon: celebrating the 50th anniversar [...]

The post Rare Sunspot “Spotted” appeared first on Sky & Telescope. [...]

The post Horsehead aka Barnard 33 & Flame NGC 2024 Nebulae in the constellation Orion appeared f [...]

The post M51 – Whirlpool Galaxy – LRGB and Ha appeared first on Sky & Telescope. [...]

The post The Moon in M44 appeared first on Sky & Telescope. [...]