The narrator of this tale of corporate discontent is an elderly lawyer who runs a profitable business handling the official financial paperwork of wealthy men. He hires Bartleby, a dispirited-looking notary, as an additional member of his staff. One day Bartleby is asked to proofread one of the documents he copied to which he simply replies that he would prefer not to. This is only the first of many refusals to the narrator's dismay and the disapproval of the other employees. Bartleby continues to participate less and less ...
The narrator of this tale of corporate discontent is an elderly lawyer who runs a profitable business handling the official financial paperwork of wealthy men. He hires Bartleby, a dispirited-looking notary, as an additional member of his staff. One day Bartleby is asked to proofread one of the documents he copied to which he simply replies that he would prefer not to. This is only the first of many refusals to the narrator's dismay and the disapproval of the other employees. Bartleby continues to participate less and less in the office work. The narrator makes many efforts to deal with him, but Bartleby refuses to perform his duties. Soon he is not working at all, and since the narrator cannot get him to leave, he moves his offices to a new location to avoid a wasted reputation. But Bartleby takes up a kind of residence at the old place, and the new tenants ask for the narrator's help. When Bartleby is forced out of the offices, he roams the hallways. The narrator makes one final attempt to reason with him, but Bartleby rejects him. The narrator is away from work a few days, and when he returns he discovers that Bartleby has been put in prison. The narrator visits him there, finding him more sullen than usual. He bribes a guard to make sure he is well fed. The narrator returns a few days later to learn that Bartleby has died, having preferred not to eat. This well-written treatment has made Bartleby one of literature's most forsaken characters, illustrating life's tiring and rigorous process, full of deadening compromises and obedience to inconsequential labor
Edition limited to 126 copies, this is one of the 100 "regular" copies (the 26 "deluxe" copies have never been completed); narrow folio in sixes; pp. , 39, ; title-p. printed in ochre and black, the phrase "I would prefer not to… " printed in ochre across the text pages in three successively larger sizes; printed by Wilbur Schilling at Claire Van Vliet's Janus Press from polymer plates. Fine throughout in original red cloth-backed gray paper-covered boards simulating bricks. The first letter-press book of the Indulgence Press.
Fine. Tight, bright, and unmarred. Printed paper boards. Small 4to. 120pp. Illus. (hand-color and b/w plates). Numbered limited edition of 30 copies + 3 APs (copies 1ñ20 aluminum plate prints and color stone lithographs on white rag paper, copies 21ñ30 aluminum plate prints on yellow paper from flax/linen). ìIn 2009 July, the graphic structure of the newspaper gave me the impulse to draw over it. Then I thought this background was the ideal way for Bartleby. After this decision, I wrote the text by hand. August-December 2009. Drawings on the newspaper, 70 pieces, used 57, Jannuary-May 2010. Mounted text and drawings together, June 2010. Gerie Reumiller did the scans and filtered the grey tone of the newspaper, 59 pieces, July 2010. Prepared for the computer to plate process, July 2010. Started printing the aluminum plates by hand on the lithopress, August-November 2010. Started preparing and printing the second color on stone, December-April 2011. Coloring the prints with watercolor, May-August 2011. Bound the first 10 copies in September 2011. î (Wolfgang Buchta, Vienna, 2011) Handmade paper by Gangolf Ulbricht, binding by Brigitte Kozumplik.
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