Three Articles for American Literature

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"Despite their apparent differences, Deleuze and Agamben have both attempted to appropiate the same text" (Cooke 80).

"Bartleby does not refuse to do anything. If Bartleby had said "I will not," his act of resistance would have merely negated the law" (Cooke 83).

     I never thought about this before. Bartleby never does refuse to do anything, he just doesn't do certain things. But his act of not doing is not a refusal, and neither is his statement of "I prefer not to." "Prefer," afterall, is not the same as "Will." Another interesting thing about this: it reminds me of another articel I read a few minutes ago, that I would have used, but it was too short. That article argued that Bartleby was actually and ideal of what we ourselves should be striving for: for independence and individuality. (Which I haven't thought about since talking about how this was a response to the tax for that one war, yada yada) These two link together in my mind not just because they are two new ideas for me, but also because they do go together. Through his peaceful actions, Bartleby does stake his own independence and individuality.


Cooke, Alexander. "Resistance, Potentiality and the Law: Deleuze and Agamben on 'Bartleby.'" Angelaki 10.3 (2005): 79-89.




"The Scarlet Letter and American Psycho occupy particular historical moments in the same national allegory of American self-fashioning" (Soderlind 63).

"According to the Puritans, Hester is an Adultress because adultery is the only non-sanctioned act she has ever been revealed as committing" (69).

     I remember thinking about this in class, the way Hester was defined by her sin. But I didn't think about how it was the only sin the Puritans really knew about. I wonder what it would be like today if everyone wore a letter on their person for every sin they had committed. "A" for adultery, maybe a "C" for cursing, "H" for heresy, a small "a" for "abuse." The human population would be a walking alphabet.

Soderlind, Sylvia. "Branding the Body American: Violence and Self-Fashioning from the Scarlet Letter to American Psycho."

     Canadian Review of American Studies. 38.1 (2008): 63-81. Electronic.



"A fresh look at Pearl, and how Hester contributes to the development of her daughter's character, can provide new insights into the role of women in today's socitety" (Daniels 221).

"Her relationship with nature coincides with the relationship she is creating with the Puritan community, and just as the community cannot control nature, wild and free, it will not be able to control Pearl, either, although it has succeeded in controlling Hester" (223).

     Truth. Looking back, Pearl wasn't so much evil as she was a 21st century child. full of free will and independence. Pearl's relationship with the Puritans also reflects the Puritan decline in the USA. It is no longer the major religion it once was.


Daniels, Cindy Lou. "Hawthorne's Pearl: Woman-Child of the Future." American Transcendental Quarterly 19.3 (2005): 221-36.


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This page contains a single entry by PatrickSchober published on October 24, 2010 12:15 PM.

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