Bartleby, the Scrivener

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Bartleby, the Scrivener

During a period of depression and eye problems from 1853-56, Melelville published a series of stories. Melville exploits Bartleby's infamous remark "I would prefer not to" to reflect his protesting attitude toward his meaningless job. Secondly, Melville gives attention to Bartleby's actions, and his constant coexistence with the inescapable wall. As a final method, Melville once more supplies you with Bartleby's actions involving his imprisonment and concluding suicide. It is through these three literary techniques of establishing character that Melville is able to constitute the idea that an insignificant job in a capitalistic society will produce an alienated worker. Herman Melville's, "Bartleby the Scrivener" is a story that takes place on Wall Street, peopled by workers of a common mold. The message that Melville intends for the reader is how society has little tolerance for social deviance. Herman Melville relates the story of Bartleby, the telling of a tragic story sprinkled with humorous subjectivity, the actual story line, through its progression should determine its categorization. For this reason, Bartleby the Scrivener is a tragedy. Throughout the story, Melville relates the many troubling incidents experienced with the mysterious copier.

In "Bartleby, the Scrivener" the narrator is an unnamed lawyer with offices on Wall Street in New York City. The lawyer is an interesting man who is difficult to understand and his thoughts seem unclear even to himself. He is also a very innocent and an unreliable lawyer. Innocent in this case means that the lawyer puts up with many of the employees' antics, avoids conflicts. The unreliable lawyer also goes to a lot of trouble in trying to help Bartleby but only helps because it gratifies himself. The lawyer manipulates the audience by showing sincerity for Bartley and then comes around by treating him differently. There is no doubt that the lawyer puts up with the behavior of his...
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