2021 Moby-Dick Marathon

Friday, January 8, 2021 – Sunday, January 10, 2021

Moby-Dick Marathon graphic black letters on white background

Moby-Dick Marathon Reading Timetable (pdf)  |  Reader Roster (pdf)  |  Shop 

Attendees joined us virtually this year for the 25th anniversary of the annual readathon of America’s most iconic novel, Moby-Dick, to relive the famous, action-packed narrative and be transported back in time on the search for the elusive white whale. The Marathon began at 11:30 am (EST) on Saturday, January 9. 

“As for me, I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote.” Moby-Dick



Special Features and Bonus Activities

Cousin Hosea’s Chowder Hall and the Decanter Taproom
Even though we weren’t together in person, attendees could enjoy a warm meal and tasty brews from the comfort of their own home. Local restaurant Moby Dick Brewing Co. and delivery service Gotchew partnered with us to keep this tradition going. One could order food at any point during the weekend! Delivery service was limited to Dartmouth, New Bedford, Acushnet, Fairhaven. Marathon Specials included Brews, Chowder, and Fish & Chips.


Moby-Dick Marathon Trivia!
Are you a Moby-Dick wiz? Put your knowledge to the test with a trivia game created by Melville Scholars. CLICK HERE to play the Trivia Game.


Opening Night Dinner & Lecture
Friday, January 8
“A Wonder, a Grandeur, and a Woe”: Melville and Human Progress with Steven Olsen-Smith
7:00 pm – 8:00 pm (EST)

This year’s Moby-Dick Marathon kicked off with a lively virtual presentation by Steven Olsen-Smith, current Professor at Boise State University and General Editor of Melville’s Marginalia Online. The talk looked closely at Melville’s body of work to trace his conception of our prospects for edification and advancement. Steven explored how admirers of Herman Melville might ponder anew Melville’s conception of humanity’s capacity for individual, social, and evolutionary growth.

Steven Olsen-Smith is a past president of the Melville Society, and he has held visiting appointments as the Holland H. Coors Endowed Chair at the United States Air Force Academy. Olsen-Smith’s research explores the influence of Melville’s reading and sources on Moby-Dick and other writings.


Chat with the Melville Scholars
Saturday, January 9 at 2:30 pm (EST) via Zoom.
Attendees, enjoying exclusive access to Melville Scholars, could ask them anything and everything Melville.


Visualizing Melville: An exhibition of Words, Ideas, Images, and Objects
Sunday, January 10 at 10 am (EST) via Zoom. 
Attendees joined Michael P. Dyer, the Museum’s Curator of Maritime History, as he paralleled the text of Moby-Dick and of other Melville books with artworks that brought the text into a more interpretive, more subjective, visual experience.


Thank You to Our Sponsors

Sylvia Group sponsor logo


Allan Smith Company Logo


Fiber Optics Center logo


BayCoast Bank logo


vineyard wind logo

Clean Uniforms logo

Design Principles logo


Moby Dick Brewing logo


GotChew logo