Bartleby the Scrivener

 the narrator introduces us to three other workers

Before introducing Bartleby, the narrator introduces us to three other workers: Turkey, Nippers, and Ginger Nut. What are they like? What is the purpose of introducing them first?

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Doubling is a recurring theme in "Bartleby." Bartleby is a phantom double of our narrator, and the parallels between them will be further explored later. Nippers and Turkey are doubles of each other. Nippers is useless in the morning and productive in the afternoon, while Turkey is drunk in the afternoon and productive in the morning. Nippers' ambition mirrors Turkey's resignation to his place and the sad uneventfulness of his career, the difference coming about because of their respective ages. Nippers cherishes ambitions of being more than a mere scrivener, while the elderly Turkey must plead with the narrator to consider his age when evaluating his productivity. Their vices are also parallel, in terms of being appropriate vices for each man's respective age. Alcoholism is a vice that develops with time. Ambition arguably is most volatile in a man's youth. These two characters are obviously not fleshed out; they are caricatures of different personalities found in the business world, and their silliness is stretched beyond the point of believable realism. They provide valuable comic relief in what is otherwise a somber and upsetting tale.