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Bartleby, The Scrivener : A Story of Wall-Street

3.89  ·  Rating Details ·  30,624 Ratings  ·  1,815 Reviews
Herman Melville wrote Bartleby the Scrivener as an emotional response to the fact that his masterpiece Moby-Dick was not selling as well as he had expected. The work is said to have been inspired, in part, by Melville's reading of Emerson, and some have pointed to specific parallels to Emerson's essay, The Transcendentalist.
Although the story was not very popular at the
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Paperback, 70 pages
Published May 19th 2009 by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (first published November 1853)
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Tony
Aug 05, 2009 Tony rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would tell you what I think of this story, but I prefer not to.
Bill  Kerwin

What a pleasure it is to return to a work of genius and find it inexhaustible! What a host of insights, what a web of subtleties, are contained within this short account of the breakdown of one man in a five man office!

I think of Melville the sailor, accustomed to wide sea vistas and many sea duties, recoiling at the confined, reduced lives of New York City office workers. I think of Melville the innovative writer, his popularity—and income—waning as his daring increased, contemplating the act o
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Riku Sayuj
Feb 24, 2012 Riku Sayuj rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spiritual, r-r-rs

Ah, Bartleby. Ah, Humanity.

At first, as I tried to contain my surprise that Melville, who awed me in Moby Dick, was now writing with such humour and lightness, I felt that Bartleby was a Heroic figure, someone to be admired and emulated - and a welcome break from the complicated characters of the doomed ship.

On second thought, with a slight sinking feeling, I felt he might be a Romantic figure, someone to be eulogized and applauded.

Then, still upbeat about the simplicity of the novella, I was su
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Mohammed  Ali
Jan 02, 2017 Mohammed Ali rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
أفضل ألا أكتب أي شيئ عن هذه القصة القصيرة , و لكن في نفس الوقت و بنفس درجة الإلحاح في عدم الكتابة أفضل أن أكتب أي شيئ , شعور متناقض أليس كذلك ؟ .

" كيف هذا ؟ قال ممون الطعام مخاطبا إياي و هو يحدق بذهول في : إنه غريب أليس كذلك ؟ "

- نعم أوافقك الرأي تماما : إنه غريب

" لو كان ثمة أي شيئ بشري بصورة عادية فيه لكنت طردته من المبنى حالا "

- نعم أوافقك الرأي تماما : هو ليس بشرا مثلنا .

" كشبح مجرد ظهر بعد النداء الثالث عند مدخل صومعته على نحو غريب ينسجم مع قوانين التعاويذ السحرية "

- نعم أوافقك الرأي تما
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Seemita
I could ask you to look beyond your desk if you are at work or peep down your balcony if you are at home and spot a Bartleby.
But I would prefer not to.
I could urge you to frame that calamitous Bartleby whose 'selective' inveterate muteness is either enhancing your tolerance reserves or sharpening your fighting skills.
But I would prefer not to.
I could exhort you to unsuccessfully debase this Bartleby’s assiduity in light of his proven peculiarity.
But I would prefer not to.
I could ask
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Florencia
Mar 30, 2014 Florencia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Florencia by: Dolors
Shelves: favorites
...happiness courts the light, so we deem the world is gay; but misery hides aloof, so we deem that misery there is none. (15)

I see a blurred silhouette. There is a person sitting at table. He is writing. He doesn't look up. Nobody could have ever seen his face. It's been hours and he doesn't get up. A man, a chair, a table and a million papers. The spitting image of desolation. Does he have any life outside that place? Probably not.
I hope he does.

I read about this particular theme concerning
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Lynne King
What an amazing story about a scrivener! I haven't read such an excellent novella as this in a long time.

Set in the 1850's and narrated by a lawyer in New York, this tale breathes and glows like a star and yet death is lurking in the background throughout. The lawyer has known many scriveners but not one such as this particular individual who continues to fascinate him so much. Nuances about the bible with Adam and Eve, etc. give such a sense of place and spirit to this work that I can only desc
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Sidharth Vardhan
"He was more a man of preferences than assumptions."

You know I often buy food from a local dhabha ( North Indian native restaurants). The waiters and cooks there work 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week before going to bed in a room within restaurants.Their whole life involves for months involves waking up at 6, cleaning the place, cooking, serving all day. Their social life for months is limited to the fellow workers. Many of them start working when they aren't even in teens. Literally no jo
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Algernon
Mar 06, 2013 Algernon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013

I can see that figure now -- pallidly neat, pitiably respectable, incurably forlorn! It was Bartleby.

One more on my reading list that comes from a Goodreads tip. Thanks again, folks! I've read it in an hour or so, but I believe it will stay with me for a lot longer.
I had to check twice the year this novella was first published : 1853!!! I couldn't wrap my mind around how modern and fresh and relevant the story of Bartleby, the human xerox machine, still is. Decades before Franz Kafka or Eugene
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Janice
Aug 29, 2011 Janice rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of attending a public seminar on Herman Melville’s short story, Bartleby, the Scrivener, given by Paul Auster and Nobel Laureate, JM Coetzee, hosted by the NYS Writer’s Institute. Because I am a huge nerd, I sat in the very front of the venue space (the first two rows of the theater were reserved for Writer’s Institute people), so I was in the third row. But Auster and Coetzee sat directly in front of me before the seminar started!! Swoon! I’ve never felt “st ...more
Ben Winch
Sep 27, 2012 Ben Winch rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: american, anglo, 5-stars
Wow, that was beautiful! How have I never read this before? It's as good as Kafka - as now as Kafka. This man, this Bartleby, is as basic a character as could realistically exist, yet as human. I defy you not to love him, though he barely does more than stand and stare and politely refuse to act. But I defy you not to empathise with the narrator too. This is about as pertinent as fiction gets. Bartleby is Oblomov, the Hunger Artist, Hamsun's stand-in in Hunger and Beckett's in everything from El ...more
mai ahmd
May 11, 2013 mai ahmd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: روايات

أفضل أن أبقى ساكنا
!

هذا نوع من الأدب الذي أحبه العبثية تحديدا مع جرعة لذيذة من الدعابة لا أدري لم لم أسمع عن الكتاب قبل ذلك حقيقة لا أظن إنه يقل مستوى عن غريب كامو وهو
قريب من مسرح اللامعقول بشخصياته الغريبة الأطوار ..

من هو بارتلبي إنه نساخ ذا سلوك غريب ينضم لمكتب محاماة من أجل نسخ الوثائق القانونية .. الراوي هو رئيسه في العمل
يجلس بارتلبي في زاوية ويباشر النسخ لكنه يرفض
أن يؤدي أي عمل آخر وفي أول بادرة لتلقي الأوامر والإستجابة لها نجد بارتلبي صاحب الوجه الشاحب والمثير للقلق يقول : أُفضّل أل
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Kalliope
Bartleby,

To ask you for your preferences, I prefer not.


Kall.

Agnieszka
May 07, 2014 Agnieszka rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Agnieszka by: Florencia

Bartleby . Bartleby the scrivener . Poor , inconspicuous man . Came from nowhere and disappeared in nothingness leaving us with his canonical already phrase I would prefer not to .

Deceptively little reading . But don’t be deceived by appearances . It starts in truly Dickensian style . The old office where one could easily imagine the lawyers in famous Jardynce & Jardynce case and the copyists are more caricatures than real people . But Bartleby ? At first is working as mad by days and nigh
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Lyn
Aug 09, 2014 Lyn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tulsa Doom: Bartleby the Scrivener, contemplate this on the tree of woe.

Bartleby the Scrivener: I would prefer not to.

Melville as a pre-existentialist, good read, and funny, also a precursor to absurdist theater, it reads like a long joke, I was left waiting for the punch line

description
Tim
Dec 18, 2010 Tim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I would prefer not to write a review.
нαиα'α ‏αвɒυℓℓαн

"نظيفاً بشكل شاحب، مهذباً بشكل يُرثى له، وبائساً على نحوٍ يتعذَّر شفاؤه!."








طرق ذلك الشاب "الغريب" باب الوظيفة الجديدة، ليظهر استعداده التام على القيام بأعباءها .. لم يدرك المحامي العجوز أنه لم يفتح الباب لموظف جديد .. بل لقصة جديدة سوف تسرقه من نفسه معظم الوقت.

بــــــارتلــبــــــــي !

تقرأ قصته بكثير من التعاطف، وتشعر في قرارة نفسك أن هذا الكائن عانى ما يفوق التعبير، ما يغير المزاج والطباع، ما يعيد صياغة النفس على صورة لا مفهومة.





في عالمٍ آخر تسكن روح بارتلبي، تعيش بعيداً عن المساس، والصوت، والصور
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Stephanie
Great classic novella!!

I really enjoyed listening to one of Herman Melville's last published works today!! The narration on the 2013 Dreamscape edition is superb - with the narrator doing an excellent rendition of Bartleby's standard catch-phrase:

 photo il_fullxfull.373369879_pttz_zpsstuthvrh.jpg

Overview:

The (unnamed) narrator is a "60-ish" well-to-do lawyer who specializes in titles, contracts, and more commercial types of transactions. He has a business on Wall Street which is thriving. He hires Bartleby as a scrivener (copyist) in order to
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Salma
Oct 26, 2016 Salma rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Bartleby the Scrivener By Bill Bragg


"نظيفا بشكل شاحب، مهذبا بشكل يرثى له، وبائسا على نحو يتعذر شفاؤه! كان ذلك بارتلبي"

قصة صغيرة غريبة عن بارتلبي، المتوحد الصامت غريب الأطوار الساكن الممتنع عن الفعل أبدا بقوله المهذب "أفضل ألا..."، متأملا الجدار طوال الوقت عوضا عن أي شيء آخر، يرويها لنا مديره ذو القلب الكبير، الذي أربكته سذاجته فحار في أمره... فيجعلك محتارا معه، فلا تدري أيستحق أن يضرب هذا البارتلبي لشدة ما يغيظ، أم يشفق عليه ويرحمه... تلك الطيبة المستفزة التي تشل الغضب الذي تثيره... يغضب أو لا ي
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فهد الفهد
بارتلبي النساخ

لم اقرأ (موبي ديك) بعد، فلأعترف بهذا من البداية، هذا اعتراف أجرجره معي في كل مكان، قليلة هي العناوين التي أشعر حولها بهذا الشعور الغريب، الخزي ربما!! قد تبدو مفردة الخزي ثقيلة، ولكن هذا هو الشعور الذي تخلفه الكتب العظيمة لدى القارئ النهم، لهذا يصنع لنفسه قوائم عار يرغب في قراءتها ليرتاح باله ويستطيع الانصراف إلى قراءاته الأخرى، ولكنه ويا للأسف يكتشف أن قوائم العار طويلة وتلتهم سنوات من العمر قبل أن تتبدد.

بارتلبي النساخ – تاركين قوائم العار لأيام قادمة – شخصية غريبة في عمل رائع، م
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Celeste Corrêa
«Bartleby, o Escrivão» ( 1853 ) de Herman Melville ( 1819-1891)

Chamem-me Bartleby. Sou um jovem pálido, asseado, desamparado, respeitável. Inspiro compaixão. Insisto em fazer apenas aquilo que desejo. A todas as solicitações, respondo sempre com «Preferia não o fazer.»

«Ah, Bartleby! Ah, humanidade!»

5 ( cinco ) estrelas
TAMi!
||-

البارتلبي الصغير الذي في داخلي، مُتعب من كل شيء ويُفضّل ألا يفعل شيء على الإطلاق. ولكن أنا -المسيطرة على كل الشخوص الصغيرة- يبدو أنني متحكمّة بما في الكفاية لأفعل الكثير من الأمور.

بارتلبي النسّاخ – لو قرر كل منّا أن يمنح هذا الرجل لقب، أنا شخصياً سأسميه مؤسس عالم "أفضّل ألا"، مثل ما صنع أشخاص عوالم من الضحك والعلوم وغيرها، هذا الإنسان بنفسه ولنفسه صنع عالم من التفضيلات، معظمها -في الحقيقة كلها- كانت من صنف "أفضّل ألا أفعل" .

راوي القصة ليس بارتلبي نفسه وإنما رئيس بارتلبي في العمل -لم يذكر اس
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Gautam
Ah Bartleby!

This is one of the best short stories I have ever read. Truly deep, dark and amusing. Melville's prose is truly captivating.

I would prefer not to write a complete review.

5 stars on 5!

-gautam
~ شهد جزاء
Dec 13, 2016 ~ شهد جزاء rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
لو كان ثمة أقل ارتباك ، غضب ، نفاد صبر ، وقاحة في
سلوكه ..... بمعنى آخر : لو كان ثمة أي شيء بشري بصورة عادية فيه !!



بين الحزن واللامبالاة ..... سأختار الحزن ~ بيجوفتش

بالضبط ! مهما كانت المشاعر سيئة على الأقل هي أفضل من اللامبالاة القاتلة ، كيف لك أن تتصور إنسانا دون مشاعر وأحاسيس .. فليكن حقدا ، أو غضبا ، أو خبثا ... سيكون حتما أرحم من الخواء والضياع وعدم الاكتراث لأي شيء !

IMG 0214


نظيفا بشكل شاحب ، مهذبا بشكل يرثى له ، وبائسا على نحو يتعذر شفاؤه

نحو ذلك الجدار الميت الكئيب يمم وجهه ..... يكتفي بالنظر
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Nahed.E
Mar 04, 2017 Nahed.E rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: أمريكي

آه يا بارتلبي ! آه أيتها الإنسانية !

تقول بثينة العيسي في اقتباس ما أعجبني ...
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أما عن هذه الرواية ...
فسيراودك إحساس لا يقاوم في رغبتك في ان تصرخ في وجه هذا العالم بعد قرائتك لها ..
سيراودك إحساس فظيع بأنك تريد أن تزيح هذه الإنسانية المزيفة من الوجود ،
أن تزيلها بكم معطفك ..
أن تُمحيها كما تُمحي شوائب نظاراتك ..
أن تصحو يوما ما ولا تجدها تحتل بابتسامتها الصفراء وقناعها المزيف غرفتك ..!
كيف يمكننا أن نتخلص منها ؟
كيف يمكننا أن نتخلص من صراخنا الصامت بداخلنا ويأسنا الذي تعدي حدود اليأس ؟
أري بارتلبي هنا
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Lee
Jan 13, 2013 Lee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Glad to plug this tiny gaping hole in my reading dike. Two thirds of it I read aloud to the wife and cat as one drew and the other slept, the TV on mute showing NFL divisional playoff action. The convolutions of the syntax struck me while reading aloud, backflipping cartwheeling old-timey tuxedo inversions that usually but not always landed as though Herman had hammered down each sentence with a nail. Every utterance revolved becoming spirals of articulation commencing time again with Bartleby o ...more
Pantelis
Sep 23, 2016 Pantelis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the moment in literary history when melancholia becomes clinical depression. The last page is among Kafka’s finest. I could elaborate on that but I would prefer not to...
Perry
Apr 09, 2014 Perry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Ah, Bartleby; ah, humanity" [the ending sentence]


Bartleby, The Scrivener: A Story of Wall Street is Kafka when Kafka wasn't cool, or even conceived. Published in 1853, it's sometimes called a novella but it's technically a "short story," a very long one.

Bartleby is a copyist, in essence a human copy machine (way before mechanical copy machines). The tale is told by his boss. Bartleby is a strange bird. Really strange. One day he decides he doesn't want to copy any more, but seems too frozen by
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Carmo
Primeiro pensei que fosse estrangeiro e não entendesse a língua...
Ou que fosse surdo...
Ou só teimoso...
Ou só parvo...
Ou então muito esperto...
Depois apeteceu-me aplicar-lhe um pontapé no traseiro e pô-lo dali para fora...
De seguida, fazer-lhe festas e levá-lo para casa, como a um cachorro abandonado...
E perdi a paciência e quis gritar com ele...
E quis levá-lo para casa e dar-lhe mimos...
Ou um par de estalos...
E deu-me vontade de chorar por ele...
E continuei a querer levá-lo para casa
...more
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Essay Prompt 2 40 Mar 30, 2015 02:47PM  
what does bartleby means to you? 11 182 Dec 02, 2014 01:16PM  
  • The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg
  • The Lesson of the Master
  • May Day
  • The Dead
  • Young Goodman Brown
  • El duelo
  • Sonny's Blues
  • The Duel
  • Selected Essays
  • My Life
  • A Simple Heart
  • The Open Boat
  • The Squabble
  • Bartleby & Co.
  • The Lemoine Affair
  • The Duel
  • The Dialogue of the Dogs
  • A&P: Lust in the Aisles
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Herman Melville was an American novelist, short story writer, essayist, and poet. His first two books gained much attention, though they were not bestsellers, and his popularity declined precipitously only a few years later. By the time of his death he had been almost completely forgotten, but his longest novel, Moby-Dick — largely considered a failure during his lifetime, and most responsible for ...more
More about Herman Melville...

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“I would prefer not to.” 275 likes
“Ah, happiness courts the light so we deem the world is gay. But misery hides aloof so we deem that misery there is none.” 36 likes
More quotes…