Enviro-Melville [website]

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2015


Enviro-Melville is a website that takes readers through four of Melville’s main works, applying a certain ecocritical theme to each of them. In Moby-Dick, Melville’s best-known epic of a tale, we will look at his comments on animal rights and his ultimate dream of suggesting a universal conscience where humans develop empathy for whales instead of viewing them solely as a resource. The Typee portion examines indigenous lands and analyzes both Melville’s critique of the polluting consequences of Western settlement and descriptions of what he perceives as the simple and ideal life of native peoples. In Redburn, the narrative account of Melville’s first voyage at sea, we will look at how he comments on the sustainable consequences of city life and takes a philosophical approach to adopting an environmental conscience as well. Finally, in “The Encantadas,” we will walk through Melville’s Romantic descriptions of the Galápagos Islands and remark how even pure wonder and awe at the stunning beauty of raw, isolated nature promotes environmental consideration.


This project was created for a section of ENGL 4997: Capstone devoted to the life and work of Herman Melville.