A Whaler's Dictionary (Paperback)

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Taking both form and inspiration from Ishmael's abandoned "Cetalogical Dictionary," this highly original work muses on myth, representation, language, nature, consciousness, notions of spiritual quest, and other elements of Melville's masterpiece. From "Accuracy" to "Wound," "Adam" to "Void," "Babel" to "Silence," these cross-referential, highly associative entries comprise an utterly singular work of art. A Whaler's Dictionary is the mesmerizing product of a total immersion into one of the greatest novels in the English language.

Praise For…

Essayistic, inventive, and frequently brilliant.”
Poetry Foundation

This is a rich, profound, fascinating book, the kind that widens the margins of everything we read, making room for new observations, more creative relationships all around: writer/reader, person/book, literature/life.”
Los Angeles Times

Wounded by a book, wounded by the force of idolatrous speech in Moby-Dick, Dan Beachy-Quick has mounted a kind of folly, a nautilus, enclosing the furtive wall of his own lyric sensibility. A Whaler's Dictionary reminds us why poets must sometimes measure their gifts against the calculus of prose, and why criticism by poets, unlike academic arguments, sometimes produces a flame which stands the test of time.”
Daniel Tiffany, author of Toy Medium and Puppet Wardrobe

This is a major work on the charged relationship that can come into being between text and reader, written by one of America’s most significant young poets.”
Lyn Hejinian, author of Saga/Circus and The Fatalist

A Whaler’s Dictionary manages to function as an oddly ideal work of criticism, breathing new life into Moby-Dick and showing how the novel subsists as an intricately living thing.”
Virginia Quarterly Review

Product Details
ISBN: 9781571313096
ISBN-10: 1571313095
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Publication Date: September 1st, 2008
Pages: 330
Language: English