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by Herman Melville

ePub The Confidence-Man : His Masquerade download
Author:
Herman Melville
ISBN13:
978-0810119680
ISBN:
0810119684
Language:
Publisher:
Northwestern University Press; 1 edition (December 4, 2002)
Category:
Subcategory:
Humor
ePub file:
1420 kb
Fb2 file:
1761 kb
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Rating:
4.9
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218

The Confidence-man book. Long considered Melville's strangest novel, The Confidence-Man is a comic allegory aimed at the optimism and materialism of mid-nineteenth century America.

The Confidence-man book. Long considered Melville's strangest novel, The Confidence-Man.

The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade, first published in New York on April Fool's Day 1857, is the ninth book and final novel by American writer Herman Melville. The book was published on the exact day of the novel's setting. Though centered around the title character, The Confidence-Man portrays a group of steamboat passengers whose interlocking stories are told as they travel down the Mississippi River toward New Orleans.

Herman Melville was born in August 1, 1819, in New York City, the son of a merchant

Herman Melville was born in August 1, 1819, in New York City, the son of a merchant. Only twelve when his father died bankrupt, young Herman tried work as a bank clerk, as a cabin-boy on a trip to Liverpool, and as an elementary schoolteacher, before shipping in January 1841 on the whaler Acushnet, bound for the Pacific. Deserting ship the following year in the Marquesas, he made his way to Tahiti and Honolulu, returning as ordinary seaman on the frigate United States to Boston, where he was discharged in October 1844.

Long considered Melville's strangest novel, The Confidence-Man is a comic allegory aimed at the optimism and .

Long considered Melville's strangest novel, The Confidence-Man is a comic allegory aimed at the optimism and materialism of mid-nineteenth century America. A shape-shifting Confidence-Man approaches passengers on a Mississippi River steamboat and, winning over his not-quite-innocent victims with his charms, urges each to trust in the cosmos, in nature, and even in human nature-with predictable results.

Herman Melville's The Confindence-Man: His Masquerade was the tenth, last, and most perplexing book of his decade as a professional man of letters. After it he gave up his ambitious effort to write works that would be both popular and profound and turned to poetry. The book was published on April 1-the very day of its title character's April Fools' Day masquerade on a Mississippi River Steamboat. Herman Melville's The Confindence-Man: His Masquerade was the tenth, last, and most perplexing book of his decade as a professional man of letters.

The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade was the last major novel by Herman Melville, the American writer and author of Moby-Dick

The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade was the last major novel by Herman Melville, the American writer and author of Moby-Dick. Published on April 1, 1857 (presumably the exact day of the novel's setting), The Confidence-Man was Melville's tenth major work in eleven years. The novel portrays a Canterbury Tales-style group of steamboat passengers whose interlocking stories are told as they travel down the Mississippi River toward New Orleans.

Herman Melville was born in New York City on August 1, 1819, to Allan and Maria Gansevoort Melvill . Following the release of The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade in 1857, Melville all but gave up on writing novels.

Herman Melville was born in New York City on August 1, 1819, to Allan and Maria Gansevoort Melvill (Maria added the "e" to the family name following her husband's death). In the mid-1820s, young Melville fell ill to scarlet fever, and though he regained his health not long afterward, his vision was left permanently impaired by the illness. The family had enjoyed a prosperous life for many years due to Allan's success as a high-end importer and merchant. Later Years, Death and Legacy.

The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Paperback – 27 June 2019. by Herman Melville (Author). In Chapter 14, in a brief aside, Melville gives the reader a kind of passepartout to his novel, when he describes the first stuffed platypus from Australia, the so-called "duck-billed beaver", which many naturalists refused to recognize as a separate species and preferred to conclude that the bill had been ably glued on. In a letter to his friend, Nathaniel Hawthorne, in 1851, Melville writes: "Let any clergyman try to preach the Truth from its very stronghold, the pulpit, and they would ride him out of his church on his own pulpit bannister.

The confidence-man: his masquerade. The confidence-man: his masquerade. by. Melville, Herman, 1819-1891. New York : Dix, Edwards.

The Confidence-Man - Herman Melville. CHAPTER 1. Mute Goes Aboard a Boat on the Mississippi. AT SUNRISE on a first of April, there appeared, suddenly as Manco Capac at the lake Titicaca, a man in cream-colors, at the water-side in the city of St. Louis. His cheek was fair, his chin downy, his hair flaxen, his hat a white fur one, with a long fleecy nap. He had neither trunk, valise, carpet-bag, nor parcel.

Long considered Melville's strangest novel, The Confidence-Man is a comic allegory aimed at the optimism and materialism of mid-nineteenth century America. A shape-shifting Confidence-Man approaches passengers on a Mississippi River steamboat and, winning over his not-quite-innocent victims with his charms, urges each to trust in the cosmos, in nature, and even in human nature--with predictable results. In Melville's time the book was such a failure he abandoned fiction writing for twenty years; only in the twentieth century did critics celebrate its technical virtuosity, wit, comprehensive social vision, and wry skepticism.This scholarly edition includes a Historical Note offering a detailed account of the novel's composition, publication, reception, and subsequent critical history. In addition the editors present the twenty-six surviving manuscript leaves and scraps with full transcriptions and analytical commentary.This scholarly edition aims to present a text as close to the author's intention as surviving evidence permits. Based on collations of both editions publishing during Melville's lifetime, it incorporates 138 emendations made by the present editors. It is an Approved Text of the Center for Editions of American Authors (Modern Language Association of America).
  • Melville himself is something of an acquired taste and even among those who appreciate him, The Confidence-Man is something of an acid test. A dark carnival set aboard a Mississippi riverboat, Melville gives us no less than a disguise-shifting Satan to point up our human foibles, gullibilities, cruelties, and weaknesses, economic, social and religious. Wandering and episodic, it reads more like a casebook than a novel, but Melville offers up a master class in nuance, irony, infolded and serial contingencies, and nearly straight-faced mischievousness. This may seem a sort of theoretical fun--a sort of philosophical stick-figure puppet show--but it is a remarkable text, just (and this may be the deal-breaker) not very rich in the conventional pleasures of the novel. Doomed from the start, Melville's last novel has been assured, however long it has taken, of a devoted cult following. Count me in.

  • Embarking from St Louis on a Mississippi riverboat named Fidèle (Faithful) two hand written signs are on display. On one a Christ like deaf mute writes lines from Corinthians like "Charity thinketh no evil" and "Charity believeth all things" and on the other a barber not wishing to give credit writes "NO TRUST". A line from The Merchant of Venice comes to mind "The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose" because the deaf mute holds up his sign filled with scriptural tolerance right beside a placard offering a reward for the capture of the Confidence man. The deaf mute "went forward, seating himself in a retired spot on the forecastle, nigh the foot of a ladder there leading to a deck above, up and down which ladder some of the boatmen, in discharge of their duties, were occasionally going." and he goes to sleep. This Jacob's ladder signals us to possible otherworldly access to the boat and as we know angels ascend and descend Jacob's ladder a fallen fellow of their kin might have made his way onto the boat via this ladder and now this Jacob sleeping at the foot of it is ready to assume successive avatars of the Confidence man. Jacob in Genesis was a trickster and it being April fools day the Confidence man takes on many a masquerade as he tries to persuade people on the riverboat to have confidence. At minimum Melville in this novel has given us a comedic Mississippi boat ride on the nature of illusion and trust and a scathing critique of mid nineteenth century America. The Confidence man as the crippled slave, Black Guinea, catches pennies in his mouth he assumes complex disguises as representatives of various charities--the Seminole Widows and Orphans Fund--the inventor of the Protean Chair that relaxes all infirmities by its flexibility, including infirmities of the tormented conscience, a naturopath herb doctor, and a representative of the Philosophical Intelligence Office. Through all of this his profits are minuscule--a dollar or three, a shave on credit, and so forth. His triumphs are the granting of confidence in him, not the money. At the close of the novel the last avatar of the Confidence man, the Cosmopolitan, is talking to an old man but the old man is trying to find a life preserver something he has never seen. The Cosmopolitan gives him a wooden stool chamber pot and tells him that it is a life preserver. He humorously tells him "I think that in case of a wreck, barring sharp-pointed timbers, you could have confidence in that stool for a special providence." In a book rife with symbolism this penultimate symbol typifies the main theme of the novel: Look to what you place confidence in or you might be left holding a chamber pot believing it to be a life preserver.

  • After Herman Melville's tales of mountainous waves, disease, apparitions, murders, suicides, cannabalism, tropical storms, tsunamis, hallucinations, lightning strikes, hangings, volcanic eruptions, starvation, giant whales and every form of terror possible on the high seas and land, "The Confidence Man" is Melville's most violent work.

    It begins with an April day, the first, "April Fool's Day" on a paddle-wheeled river boat heading downstream from St. Louis, Missouri to New Orleans, Louisiana. The river is wide, 6 kilometers (3.7 miles) at certain points, but a river boat is generally thought to be a reassuring form of travel.

    This is not the case, not once in the 45 chapters which follow. The concentration of psychological violence is so intense that the reader is unaware of its insidious presence which manifests itself continually in its different disguises.

    In Chapter 14, in a brief aside, Melville gives the reader a kind of passepartout to his novel, when he describes the first stuffed platypus from Australia, the so-called "duck-billed beaver", which many naturalists refused to recognize as a separate species and preferred to conclude that the bill had been ably glued on.

    In a letter to his friend, Nathaniel Hawthorne, in 1851, Melville writes: "Let any clergyman try to preach the Truth from its very stronghold, the pulpit, and they would ride him out of his church on his own pulpit bannister."

    Obviously for many this is a totally unacceptable view of the human race. Incomprehension and
    denial are natural defensive reactions. But considering that 153 years have passed since the
    publication of "The Confidence Man" and considering the accumulated evidence we have at hand, this prophetic novel provides the ONLY credible conclusive appraisal of the human condition.

  • Melville catapulted me into another time through his colorful, descriptive language--I had to look up words used in what is to me an archaic, 19th Century delivery. I may have to read this one twice to better absorb the subtle, at times comical play of con artists hustling money or approval from targets on the boat trip down the Mississippi. Enjoyable.