Major works of criticism focused on Moby Dick:

Franklin, Bruce, In the Wake of the Gods. Franklin has one chapter devoted to Moby-Dick, which may be the best 45 pages you will read on Moby-Dick, and other chapters focusing on Melville's other books. this is my favorite book of Melville criticism. He is usually both right and provocative, and a heroic researcher who did things like immerse himself in 19th century comparative mythology while avoiding the subsequent in order to produce this little marvel. There is a gloriously useful index of non-Christian mythological references in Melville in the back.

Hayes, Kevin and Parker, Hershel, Checklist of Melville Reviews. Stick this in your bathroom (the downstairs one that guests use) to advertise the Melville obsession.

Olson, Charles, Call Me Ishmael. This is an experience all its own. Olson was a mad man. Still, his chapter on Moby-Dick and Lear is Franklin's competition for best read on The Whale.

Parker, Hershel, Hayford, Harrison, et al., Moby Dick (Northwestern-Newberry Scholarly Edition). This includes lots of interesting source material, a fair bit of completely uninteresting material, and a lengthy historical note you should take with a grain of salt. The extremely detailed editing notes are worth some attention; there are some real nuggets in there. Also, their insight on the British and Canadian appreciation of Moby Dick during the long period prior to the revival is tremendous.

Philbrick, Nathaniel, Why Read Moby Dick. I have a review up on this one, and consider Philbrook a boon companion to read Moby with; it's light, easy to read, and helpful.

Weaver, Raymond, Herman Melville: Mystic and Mariner. The publication of this book is often seen as the birth of the Melville revival. It holds up pretty well, though Weaver is infatuated with Moby-Dick and does not see the beauty of Melville's post-Moby-Dick work. There is an odd way in which this book, which so crystalized the revival, actually set up barriers to appreciating the other works that may be part of what has led to this succession of subsequent revivals.

Winters, Yvor, Maule's Curse: Seven Studies in American Obscurantism. Old Yvor hated Romantics, and this book is conceived mostly as his evisceration of them. Yet, he cannot but have a soft spot for Moby-Dick. Yvor is almost always both wrong and provocative, and was the teacher of Franklin, my favorite critic. He appreciately much of the mythology and intellectual gamesmanship in the book.

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