Herman Melville Essays

College

Bartleby the Scrivener

The abstract notion of fulfillment is one that creates a never ending search. The issue that prevails is that it is intangible and therefore cannot be classified with the least bit of certainty. Society on the other hand, is run by the rule of...

College

Benito Cereno

There is, perhaps, no other American author whose work has been so hotly debated than Herman Melville. The white whale at the center of his most famous work, a juxtaposition of gender in America, an odd scrivener, and his much discussed story of a...

Bartleby the Scrivener

"Strangely huddled at the base of the wall, his knees drawn up, and lying on his side, his head touching the cold stones, I saw the wasted Bartleby. I felt his hand, when a tingling shiver ran up my arm and down my spine to my feet" (1173).

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Bartleby the Scrivener

The characters of many poems, stories, and other works of art act as critics or representations of the author's society. American writers Benjamin Franklin and Herman Melville both commented on their respective eras using this method. Franklin...

Bartleby the Scrivener

The narrator and Bartleby - principle characters of Herman Melville's Bartleby, the Scrivener - are opposite sides of the same coin. Their perspectives and connections to life seem to be similar. However, the narrator thrives in the...

Bartleby the Scrivener

In Herman Melville’s “Bartleby, the Scrivener,” the setting contributes to the tone, the style, the theme and particularly the characterization of Bartleby, a scrivener working for the narrator. The parallelism between the setting and the...

Benito Cereno

Before the truth surrounding the strange fate of Benito Cereno becomes apparent, Herman Melville effects an intriguing juxtaposition between Don Benito and Babo while the latter adheres to the toilette of his "master." Captain Delano, while...

Billy Budd

To read Herman Melville's Billy Budd is to experience feelings of intense agony and helpless injustice. Billy Budd, a "Handsome Sailor," adored by his shipmates for his intrinsic goodness, is condemned to death by a seemingly formalistic and...