In this article, Herman Melville's short story, "Bartleby", is a springboard to discussing different aspects of interpretation in literature and law. "Semantic pluralism" in literature may mean that a work is well-crafted; in law, a multitude of possible meanings may allow a decision-maker to impose political choices undemocratically. The author illustrates this thesis by offering different interpretations of "Bartleby" and by contrasting these to the process of "legal" interpretation. The author concludes by relating the interpretations of "Bartleby" with the nature of lawyers' work.
"A Meditation on "Bartleby"."
Osgoode Hall Law Journal