Bartleby the Scrivener PDF is a short story written by Herman Melville that was first published anonymously in Putnam’s Magazine in 1853. The story was later collected in Melville’s “The Piazza Tales” in 1856. The publisher of the original publication was George Palmer Putnam.
The story received mixed reviews upon its initial publication, with some critics praising its subversive nature and others finding fault with its unconventional structure and lack of resolution. However, over time, “Bartleby the Scrivener” has come to be recognized as a masterpiece of American literature and a precursor to modernist works.
The story follows the titular character, Bartleby, who is a scrivener (a copyist of legal documents) working for a lawyer in New York City. Bartleby initially performs his duties well but gradually becomes more and more withdrawn, refusing to do any work beyond copying and ultimately refusing to leave the office. The story explores themes of alienation, individualism, and the dehumanizing nature of work. Bartleby the Scrivener is available in a variety of formats, including print and digital editions.
Table of Contents
About the Author
Herman Melville (1819-1891) was an American writer and novelist, best known for his novel “Moby-Dick”. He was born in New York City and had a difficult childhood due to his family’s financial struggles. He left school at the age of 15 to work as a clerk and later as a sailor on a whaling ship.
Melville’s experiences at sea provided inspiration for much of his writing, including “Moby-Dick” and “Typee”. He was also influenced by the works of Shakespeare, Milton, and Emerson. However, Melville struggled to gain critical acclaim during his lifetime, and his works were often overlooked or criticized for being too complex or unconventional.
It was not until after his death that Melville’s work gained wider recognition and appreciation. Today, he is considered one of the greatest American writers of the 19th century and his works are celebrated for their exploration of themes like individualism, identity, and the human condition.
In addition to “Moby-Dick” and “Bartleby the Scrivener”, Melville’s other notable works include “Typee”, “Omoo”, “Billy Budd, Sailor”, and “The Confidence-Man”. Melville passed away in 1891 at the age of 72.
Details of Bartleby the Scrivener Book
|Book||Bartleby the Scrivener|
|Originally published||December 1853|
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Multiple Languages Editions of Bartleby the Scrivener Book
“Bartleby the Scrivener” by Herman Melville is available in numerous languages, including Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, and more. Many translated editions can be found in print and digital formats.
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Bartleby the Scrivener Summary
The story is about a man named Bartleby who works as a scrivener, which means he copies legal documents by hand. Bartleby is hired by a lawyer in New York City, and he works well at first, but soon begins to act strangely.
At first, Bartleby simply refuses to do certain tasks, like proofreading his work. But over time, he becomes more withdrawn and stops doing any work at all. He also stops leaving the office and starts living there. The lawyer tries to reason with Bartleby and even offers him other jobs, but Bartleby always responds with the phrase, “I would prefer not to.”
As time goes on, Bartleby’s behavior becomes more and more erratic. He stops eating and eventually dies in the office. The lawyer is left feeling confused and guilty about his inability to help Bartleby.
The story explores themes of isolation, individualism, and the dehumanizing nature of work. It also questions the nature of responsibility and duty, as the lawyer struggles with how much he owes Bartleby and how much he owes himself and his other employees.
Similar Books to Bartleby the Scrivener Book
- The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
- The Stranger by Albert Camus
- The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
- One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
- A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
- Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
- The Trial by Franz Kafka
- Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
FAQs(Frequently Asked Questions)
What is the story Bartleby the Scrivener about?
The story is about a scrivener named Bartleby who works for a lawyer and gradually becomes more withdrawn and uncooperative, eventually refusing to do any work at all.
What is the main point of Bartleby the Scrivener?
The story explores themes of isolation, individualism, and the dehumanizing nature of work.
What is the conclusion of Bartleby the Scrivener?
The story ends with Bartleby’s death and the lawyer’s feelings of guilt and confusion about his inability to help him.
How long does it take to read Bartleby the Scrivener book?
Since it is a short story, it can typically be read in one sitting, which could take around 30-60 minutes.