The tragic flaw of Bartleby

Essay by fuzzymonkeyHigh School, 11th gradeA, June 2004

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Bartleby is an unconventional and non-efficient being. He does what he wishes when he wishes. He does not do what is asked of him. Dealing with this type of person is challenging and trying. When asked to do something, Bartleby would listen, but would often responded "I would prefer not to." He does not say he won't do it, but he would rather not. Throughout the entire narration of this story Bartleby never does something he wishes not to, he succeeds in his lethargic ways. This inspires me to just say, "I don't want to" or "I'd rather not" when something is asked of me. The reason I don't live my life by these words is that in this society I live in, there would be consequences. For Bartleby no consequences took place he was un-happy with, even once send to jail he was content with not having to accomplish anything.

It inspires neither pity nor terror in me. I do not have any emotions besides laughter after reading this. I don't feel pity because Bartleby was satisfied with his place in life and pity is felt when someone is felt sorry for, that is not the case. Terror would be felt if Bartley could inspire others to be like himself but he did not. If he could have done this, a mass of Bartleby's would have been destructive and disruptive. Bartleby only deeply affects one person, the lawyer. Other people are exposed to his behavior but since they have not tried to understand Bartleby they are not attached or affected by him and end up sending him off to jail. I do in a sense feel sorry about the fact Bartleby ended up in jail, in my opinion he did not do anything wrong. He was...