Meyer, Michael J.
About the editor: Michael J. Meyer is Adjunct professor of English at DePaul University and Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. His most recent contribution to Steinbeck studies was as the editor of the update of The Steinbeck Bibliography 1982-1996 (Scarecrow 1998); he has also published chapters on Steinbeck in several study guides and essay collections. A former Assistant Editor of the Steinbeck Quarterly (1990-93), Meyer’s PhD was awarded by Loyola University of Chicago. He is presently serving as do-editor of The Steinbeck Encyclopaedia (forthcoming, Greenwood press).2000 0-7734-7835-3
This volume contains a diverse and provocative collection of critical essays that explore Steinbeck’s preoccupation with the story of Cain and Abel. Among other things, the essays address the issue of how, for Steinbeck, the story of sibling rivalry reflects a deeper, typically American confusion over whether to chose brotherhood over self-satisfaction. A second issue involves whether mankind should work toward unification with those they consider to be personally threatening or whether such threats should be eliminated through violence. This volume probes the complexity of Steinbeck’s reconstruction of this ancient myth and offers both Biblical and literary scholars the opportunity to examine the various ways he incorporated the story into his extensive canon.