Blood Meridian Cormac Mccarthy

Blood Meridian Discussion

Host: Erik & Jason

In this episode, Jason A. Staples, Ph.D. and Erik Rostad discuss Blood Meridian: or The Evening Redness in the West by Cormac McCarthy.

Show Notes

  • Jason A. Staples, Ph.D. website –
  • Jason’s upcoming book to be published by Cambridge University Press – The Idea of Israel in Second Temple Judaism: A New Theory of People, Exile, and Israelite Identity
  • Sign up for Jason’s newsletter
  • Author: Cormac McCarthy
  • My Thoughts About Blood Meridian
  • Purchase the Book
  • Help Build the new Books of Titans Library and Studio!
  • Get Book Ideas
  • Books of Titans Website
  • My Heart Leaps Up by William Wordsworth (The Child is father of the Man)
  • Hewers of Wood
  • Yale Lectures
    • – In this first of two lectures on Blood Meridian, Professor Hungerford walks us through some of the novel’s major sources and influences, showing how McCarthy engages both literary tradition and American history, and indeed questions of origins and originality itself. The Bible, Moby-Dick, Paradise Lost, the poetry of William Wordsworth, and the historical narrative of Sam Chamberlain all contribute to the style and themes of this work that remains, in its own right, a provocative meditation on history, one that explores the very limits of narrative and human potential.
    • – In this second lecture on Blood Meridian, Professor Hungerford builds a wide-ranging argument about the status of good and evil in the novel from a small detail, the Bible the protagonist carries with him in spite of his illiteracy. This detail is one of many in the text that continually lure us to see the kid in the light of a traditional hero, superior to his surroundings, developing his responses in a familiar narrative structure of growth. McCarthy’s real talent, and his real challenge, Hungerford argues, is in fact to have invoked the moral weight of his sources–biblical, literary, and historical–while emptying them of moral content. Much as the kid holds the Bible an object and not a spiritual guide, McCarthy seizes the material of language–its sound, its cadences–for ambiguous, if ambitious, ends.

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Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy
My 2021 Reading List