1. 3. Herman Melville. Bartleby The Scrivener (I). The author (2014)

Apunte Inglés
Universidad Universidad Pompeu Fabra (UPF)
Grado Humanidades - 4º curso
Asignatura Studies in English Literature
Año del apunte 2014
Páginas 2
Fecha de subida 07/11/2014
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Classe de dimarts 21/10. Segona part (la primera, pertanyent a Hawthorne i 'The Birthmark', la trobareu al final dels apunts de dijous 16/10).

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1. 3. HERMAN MELVILLE. BARTLEBY THE SCRIVENER (I) The character description is very elaborated. Even the narrator says a lot of things about himself. The character is symptomatic because he represents something. In fact, this story could be very contemporary. The author knows how to settle the story and how to hide the information. There are a lot of moments where the narrator presents himself as an honest employer. The story itself is kind of depressing.
Biographical Sketch American Renaissance: Poe, Melville, Emerson (philosopher), Hawthorne, Stowe, Dickinson, etc. It was a very male movement.
- A life of relative luxury until age 13, when his father went bankrupt (later went insane and died). His father had businesses. He always looked at the financial world suspiciously because he identified it with his father's death.
- Taken out of school; takes up different jobs over a period of several years yet continues to educate himself. Individual idea of the self-made man. He at one point considered becoming a legal scrivener.
- At age 21 he signs on to a whaling ship; for four years he experiences adventures that later on he will fictionalize.
- Typee (1846) opens his career; achieves fame as "the man who lived among the cannibals".
- Despite his early success his novels become more and more obscure, experimental and philosophical.
- Moby-Dick (1851) is poorly received. He had a feeling that he had failed.
- During the 1850s many people (even his family) thought he was insane.
- At the request of his father-in-law he travels to Europe and the Middle East to restore his health.
- In 1866 obtains a government job as customs officer that gives them financial stability and time to write.
He became a civil servant.
- In 1867 his son Malcolm commits suicide.
- During the 1860s writes poetry.
- At the time of his death he was little appreciated.
- Interest in his writings was revived thanks to the publication of his posthumous novella Billy Budd (1924).
Novels: Typee (1846), Omoo (1847), Mardi (1849), Redburn (1849), White-Jacket (1850), Moby-Dick (1851), Pierre, or the Ambiguities (1852), Israel Potter (1855), The Confidence Man (1857), Billy Budd (1925) Poetry: Battle Pieces (1837), Clarel (1876), John Marr and Other Sailors (1888), Timoleon (1891) Short stories: The Piazza Tales (1856) (“The Piazza”, “Bartleby the Scrivener”, “Benito Cereno”, “The Encantadas or Enchanted Islands”, “The Lightning-Rod Man”, “The Bell-Tower”); “The Paradise of Bachelors and the Tartarus of Maids”; “The Happy Failure”, “The Fiddler”; “Cock-A-Doodle-Doo”; “Poor Man’s Pudding and Rich Man’s Crumbs”...
When it came to writing, Melville said that he didn’t want to be a commercial writer.