Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street Questions and Answers

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The lawyer who narrates the story has long been puzzled over Bartleby's behavior. Why did his scrivener, whose job it was to spend his days copying out and then checking the accuracy of legal...

Latest answer posted February 12, 2017 11:02 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Given that the action of Melville's existential fable is seen through the narrator's eyes, one can argue that he is the central character: the story is told from his point of view, not Bartleby's....

Latest answer posted October 11, 2018 8:01 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

You know, the standard of "fair" is pretty nebulous. If it's fair to overlook Bartleby's flaws just as he overlooks Turkey's and Nippers's flaws, then he is fair. If allowing Bartleby to live in...

Latest answer posted November 13, 2010 11:26 am UTC

4 educator answers

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

This story of the inscrutable Bartleby is appealing because of its ambiguity. For, it explores several concepts: the alienation of man, passivity, nonconformity, and psychological imprisonment....

Latest answer posted June 26, 2010 1:30 pm UTC

2 educator answers

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Bartleby is, quite simply, looking for a job when he goes to Wall Street. What Bartleby sees that the lawyer does not is a meaningless to life. While working in the dead letter office, Bartleby...

Latest answer posted December 3, 2007 9:44 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

There are several interesting historical question associated with Melville's story about Bartleby, the scrivener. I can suggest three possibilitites, each of which would add to the rich texture of...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2013 12:52 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The lawyer's legal clerks, Nippers, Turkey, and young Ginger Nut, confirm his report of himself in the opening paragraphs of Melville's story "Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street,"...

Latest answer posted May 17, 2010 6:24 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

One could say that Bartleby's passive-aggressive behavior represents a defiance of the existing social order and the capitalist system on which it is based. And working on Wall Street, the...

Latest answer posted July 17, 2018 1:48 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

In both essays (both written in the same time period, the late 1960s), French post-structuralists Barthes and Foucault argue that assigning an "author" to a text is a way to limit and control its...

Latest answer posted November 18, 2019 9:40 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

"Bartleby the Scrivener" is one of Melville's more challenging short fictions and your question requires an answer that is more oblique than usual. To me, Bartleby the Scrivener has always...

Latest answer posted November 27, 2009 10:28 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Ah, Turkey and Nippers! Their names alone are humorous! The description is as thus: Turkey is a young man and Nippers is an older man, representing the two ends of the wall street workers....

Latest answer posted November 20, 2007 3:36 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The story’s larger symbolism comes into play when asking about the narrator’s motives and cessation of effort. This piece fictionalizes Man’s impotence in the face of the inevitable; at its...

Latest answer posted November 26, 2011 12:57 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Loneliness is an emotion; aloneness is a physical/psychological state. It has been clear for a century that Poe’s poem is a sincerely emotional reaction to loss, probably romantic. The narrator...

Latest answer posted May 23, 2013 10:23 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

There is virtually no information on Bartelby's past.  He is an engima, and constucted so purposely by Melville.  Bartelby is the image of those he reflects, like a sort of horrific...

Latest answer posted July 24, 2007 10:50 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Interesting question! Your definition of Bartleby's life edict will depend upon your own personal inclinations. Does Bartleby's phrase of "I would prefer not to" (spoken fourteen times in the...

Latest answer posted May 1, 2017 10:01 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The simple answer is that we don't know for sure. It would require Bartleby's examination by a trained professional to settle the matter once and for all. However, there seems little doubt that the...

Latest answer posted July 20, 2018 7:15 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Bartleby, from Herman Melville's short story "Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street," embodies the characterization of the "introvert" in various ways. In fact, the reader is quickly...

Latest answer posted January 11, 2019 8:43 pm UTC

3 educator answers

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Herman Melville was well known for being disenchanted with city life, and with New York in particular. Slowly, the agricultural life of Americans was changing, to be replaced by migration to the...

Latest answer posted April 16, 2008 1:49 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

"Bartleby, the Scrivener" was actually written by Hawthorne's close friend Herman Melville. In his review of Hawthorne's Twice-Told Tales, Poe stresses that brevity is one of the most important...

Latest answer posted August 19, 2018 7:12 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

At first I would have, without hesitation, stated that Bartleby is the main character in the short story of "Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street," by Herman Melville. The story is named...

Latest answer posted June 3, 2011 1:36 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

I believe it was Herman Melville's intention to draw a sharp contrast between Bartleby and his employer. Bartleby is a loner, an introvert. He wants to work alone and to be left alone. The narrator...

Latest answer posted April 24, 2012 9:55 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

While it might seem that Bartleby is the main character, he is so unknown and unknowable that I argue that he is not. In fact, the main character is the unnamed "lawyer" who must deal...

Latest answer posted October 23, 2007 7:45 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

Many critics see this excellent story as a critique of the way that American society was beginning to embrace capitalism as a doctrine that would come to transform and define it. Note the way that...

Latest answer posted November 24, 2011 6:59 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The beginning of this story introduces us to the narrator. It is clear from the opening sentence that this is a man who has reached the end of his career, and he is somebody who has enjoyed a...

Latest answer posted October 12, 2012 5:53 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

This fascinating short story/novel by the author of Moby Dick is most striking because it takes place in the rule-bound world of Wall Street, where conventions both financial and social are rigid...

Latest answer posted February 9, 2016 10:56 pm UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The lawyer learns that Bartelby "would prefer not" to live. He rejects all the food the lawyer has paid the jailer to feed him. He simply says "I would prefer not to dine today. It would disagree...

Latest answer posted February 4, 2009 5:52 am UTC

1 educator answer

Bartleby the Scrivener, A Tale of Wall Street

The character of Bartleby connects to the theme of hopelessness that the story explores. He at first is an ideal scrivener in the eyes of the lawyer, but then he shuts downs. Rather than do what he...

Latest answer posted December 18, 2019 1:17 am UTC

1 educator answer

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