Bartleby

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Bartleby, the Scrivener—Herman Melville 1st person narrator, which can be rather unreliable. The text is directed to a certain kind of audience: he writes formiddle-class.Idea that failure is a success. Fail is necessary to become. Connected to fall (Adam) from Grace.About Melville’s work:very honest. Way he uses vocabulary. He’s peaceful. He never indulges in indignation.Everything is well thought by Melville. He was succesful. He wrote other works as Moby dick. Melville does a critic ofcapitalismbut not through the employees but through the employer, we see an unleveled situation through theoppressor instead of through the oppressed.He always tries to succeed in originality.  ‘It is better to fail in originality than succeed in imitation’. Copies from Charles Dickens. *Valuable: description 3 man, only cares about money. Valuable usually used to objects. Money is important for the lawyer. He describes people and himself. He wants readers to start questioning the narrator: this means questioning yourself as a reader, which is hard to achieve. We also found figures as animalisation, for ex, when he compares Turkey to a horse. Melville is perversely painting the character of the lawyer. Bartleby has to transform the lawyer. We sympathize with the lawyer. Constant symbolism of an environment isolated from nature, an alienating environment where characters are trapped in a claustrophobic world full of walls to which Bartleby is constantly put against. The office is a perfect example of this claustrophobic environment.1st time, the power of the lawyer is confronted. The lawyer uses a purely economic language to refer to people, as he considers people as valuables just if they can provide some economic benefit to him. He uses the terms ‘useful’ and ‘valuable’ to talk about the people that surrounds him, and that’s precisely what **Bartleby’s there to change, he needs the lawyer to change his materialistic and purely capitalist way of thinking about everyone and start seeing people as friends, as humans as himself instead of solely as economic assets. The lawyer adapts himself to the situation because he has not another option. When he thinks that all have disappeared the ghost appears (problems). No reaction from the lawyer. The lawyer wants Bartleby to leave, but he’s not a bad fellow. The only way to open the eyes of the lawyer is by Bartleby dying. At the end, and with a dead Bartleby in sight, he still refers to him in economic terms, as he’s not useful anymore, he’s ‘wasted’. 

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