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March 31, 2018
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM
Temple Terrace Public Library
202 Bullard Pkwy

Temple Terrace, FL 33617
(813) 506-6770
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Book Roundtable - "Bartleby the Scrivener" by Herman Melville and "The Telltale Heart" by Edgar Allen Poe

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Bartleby the Scrivener - When a New York lawyer needs to hire another copyist, it is Bartleby who responds to his advertisement, and arrives "pallidly neat, pitiably respectable, incurably forlorn." At first a diligent employee, he soon begins to refuse work, saying only "I would prefer not to." So begins the story of Bartleby—passive to the point of absurdity yet extremely disturbing—which rapidly turns from farce to inexplicable tragedy. The Telltale Heart is told by an unnamed narrator who endeavors to convince the reader of his sanity, while describing a murder he committed. The victim was an old man with a filmy "vulture-eye", as the narrator calls it. The murder is carefully calculated, and the murderer hides the body by dismembering it and hiding it under the floorboards. Ultimately the narrator's guilt manifests itself in the form of the sound—possibly hallucinatory—of the old man's heart still beating under the floorboards.