In my 5,625-word review essay "Edward F. Edinger's 1995 Book on Melville's Moby-Dick (1851), and Walter J. Ong's Thought," I discuss Edinger's book Melville's Moby-Dick: An American Nekyia, the re-titled and revised and updated edition of his 1978 book Melville's Moby-Dick: A Jungian Commentary: An American Nekyia. In printed editions of the Homeric epic the Odyssey, Book Eleven about Odysseus' visit to the underworld is titled Nekyia. Edinger's thesis is that in the process of writing Moby-Dick, Melville visited the underworld in his psyche, figuratively speaking. In Jungian terminology, the underworld in one's psyche is known as the collective unconscious, home of the archetypes, including the archetype of the Self (capitalized to distinguish it from the lower-case self of ego-consciousness). I frame my discussion of Edinger's lucidly written and accessible book in the larger conceptual framework of thought of the American Jesuit Renaissance specialist and cultural historian Walter J. Ong (1912-2003; Ph.D. in English, Harvard University, 1955).
Farrell, Thomas J.
Edward F. Edinger's 1995 Book on Melville's Moby-Dick (1851), and Walter J. Ong's Thought.
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