Bartleby, the Scrivener: Analysis Essay

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From the very first time we see Turkey in the story of Bartleby, the narrator feels superior to him and annoyed by Turkey. The narrator completely thinks that he is superior to Turkey. "I had much ado to keep him from being a reproach to me." The narrator is scared that Turkey may make him look bad.

I noticed that the narrator did not describe Turkey’s appearance like his face or body, he only mentions Turkey's clothes. The author shows how Turkey is dirty, untidy and sloppy with words and phrases. He uses things like "oily", "smelling of eating houses", "loose and baggy", "execrable", "not to be handled." I really get the feeling that the author doesn’t like Turkey at all. He is always judging Turkey and examining him, and he is very bothered by the way that Turkey dresses.

The narrator sarcastically says that Turkey takes off his hat the moment he enters the room because of "his natural civility and deference." Civility and deference are good traits to have though, so why would he say that when he doesn’t like him. Turkey does that not because he is really well-mannered but because he has to do so as an inferior to the narrator. Even after Turkey has taken his hat off, the narrator is still concerned with his coat. He thinks that the excuse for Turkey is that he is too poor. "The truth was, I suppose, that a man with so small an income could not afford to sport such a lustrous face and a lustrous coat at one and the same time." The word small was placed in front of income because it helps to emphasize his poverty, and to make the sentence very sarcastic and rude.

Then the narrator presents Turkey with his coat which is way better than the one Turkey already had. This kind of deed really throws you off until later when you really see what the narrator is up to. The narrator's coat and Turkey's coat are completely opposite. One is "highly respectable-looking" and gives "a most comfortable warmth", while the other is "execrable" and "oily.” The narrator's...
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