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erman M elville , C orrespondence 193–94 (Lynn Horth ed., 1993). What Romain Rolland later terms the oceanic feeling turns out to represent a longing to be immersed in a corporate form; we don’t transcend painful, isolated individuality by trying to merge with Nature, but the corporation. As in Mardi , the pantheist spreads or merges into the immense body of Nature or the planet itself. Often used to evoke experiences of reverie with Nature, the discourse of merger generates a language of both social connection and utter disindividuation. As he grows more cynical