A literary analysis of bartleby the scrivener by herman melville

He dies there curled into the fetal position suggesting a possible tomb-womb punas if he could return to a state of innocence only in death. The other major stylistic device employed by Melville is his unreliable narrator, who sees only what is on the surface.

Those who do not fit into the common mold are pressured to change or are removed forcibly. The heart of the eternal pyramids, it seemed, wherein, by some strange magic, through the clefts, grass-seed, dropped by birds, had sprung. Additionally, The Lawyer requesting Bartleby go to the Post Office must be especially off-putting to Bartleby, as he used to work in the Dead Letter Office as we learn later.

This of course, is a kind of obsession that is not acceptable and will come to be crushed by society with the narrator as the agent of punishment. Bartleby comes for an interview, and The Lawyer hires him.

The narrator, who is a lawyer, analyses the workers around him and becomes focused and intrigued by one of the many workers, Bartleby. The layout of the office is a clear example of the disconnected modern workplace: In the end they are both the losers.

After a series of requests from the narrator that all end in failure, Bartleby makes the decision to shift his decision to something else, doing nothing whatsoever. The Lawyer then wonders whether gingernut cakes are all that Bartleby eats, and he ponders the effect of what an all-gingernut-cake diet might do to the human constitution.

He challenges himself, "What! So, The Lawyer reckons that if he were to turn Bartleby away, another employer would probably not be so willing to accept his eccentricities. The narrator finds Bartleby at the culmination of his final obsession, huddled up against the base of the prison wall starved to death.

He feels that Bartleby has listened to his argument, and still prefers not to. Even though he is essentially an intern, Ginger Nut is given a desk in the office that he basically never uses, leaving an empty, useless space in an already-crowded office.

Although Bartleby spends literally all of his time in the office, The Lawyer is unable to get to know him better, and the only member of the office Bartleby interacts with is Ginger Nut, a twelve-year-old boy. Active Themes The Lawyer stands there, unsure what to do.

Bartleby, the Scrivener

Thus, the productivity of the two were opposite. If these jibes from his coworkers bother Bartleby, he shows no indication. Therefore, after taking into consideration, all of these peculiar, motionless, and sometimes morbid sense of reality one would come to the conclusion that Bartleby was a very depressed, lonely, and disgruntled individual who was struggling with the motions of everyday life.

Bartleby is character that holds an aesthetic of performing only a single action to the exclusion to everything else, this is his obsession. He asks Bartleby many questions about his family his personal history, but Bartleby prefers not to answer any of them.

The first copyist that the narrator describes is Turkey. Yet The Lawyer attempts the same oral exchange with Bartleby, expecting him to comply.

In reality, there is little difference between a window with no view and a wall. The lawyer, who is given to egotism and pomposity, notes with an aphorism, "Nothing so aggravates an earnest person as a passive resistance" and compares his efforts to motivate Bartleby to the futile attempt of striking sparks with his knuckles "against a bit of Windsor soap.

Finally, when Bartleby is shipped off to prison, he truly does nothing, not even taking partaking of the basic functions required to sustain life. There, he finds the office door locked, and when the door is opened he finds Bartleby on the other side.

Bartleby stares at this wall when he prefers not to work. The narrator finds Bartleby at the culmination of his final obsession, huddled up against the base of the prison wall starved to death.

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street Analysis

In other words, this narrator is an unambitious lawyer who does not like taking risks. The Lawyer then describes his office.

Bartleby the Scrivener

The Lawyer calls again. A similar example of tactile artistry is the allusion to a "pillar of salt," which particularizes the stodgy response of the lawyer at the head of his "column of clerks.

Alas, Bartleby prefers not to accept this gesture as well, refusing to eat and instead choosing to lie on the floor of the prison, wasting away. Will you not speak? In a broader sense Melville is making the point that industrialization is stripping away our morals, breeding a society based on the self-centered individual.

A day later, Bartleby ceases doing any work at all—he spends his days staring at the wall, and The Lawyer decides it is time to rid the office of Bartleby.

The Lawyer knows he only has two options:"Bartleby the Scrivener" Summary. The narrator of "Bartleby the Scrivener" is the Lawyer, who runs a law practice on Wall Street in New York.

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street Analysis

Literary Devices in Bartleby the Scrivener Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory Death seems to surround Bartleby from the moment he walks in the door and into the Narrator's life. A summary of "Bartleby the Scrivener" in Herman Melville's Melville Stories.

Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Melville Stories and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans.

Published in"Bartleby the Scrivener" is one of American writer Herman Melville's most often-read and studied works (which is really saying a lot, considering that the guy also penned numerous classics, including Moby-Dick and Billy Budd).

"Bartleby" is a departure from the sea-faring adventures that Melville often presented to readers; in fact, this is a story in which the most exciting thing that happens is.

Herman Melville's Bartleby the Scrivener - A Literary Analysis Bartleby the Scrivener is a story that takes place on Wall Street, peopled by workers of a common mold.

Being a non-conformatist of the most extreme type, Bartleby is eventually suffers a death of attrition. Literary Devices in Bartleby the Scrivener Symbolism, Imagery, Allegory Death seems to surround Bartleby from the moment he walks in the door and into the Narrator's life.

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A literary analysis of bartleby the scrivener by herman melville
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