Hey, G. My Bartleby experience was vastly different than yours, it appears. It was, for me, about how we're all on a lemming march - how we dress, the things we're allowed to say socially...Everything we do, more than we even know, is pre-ordained,.. rules trickled down through the ages, tweaked but upheld and highly regimented by the majority.
This guy says "I'd prefer not to," and the world upends around him. People are confounded, furious,... The metaphors of police called in, the asylum, and the skillful epigrammatic mention of his working in the postal system... the Lost Letters and their effect on him... it was harrowing, smart, and deeply personal for me. I'd read it again to remember who I was when I was proud of myself.
I read "The Necklace" and didn't like it, but I will happily try "In the Wood" on your recommendation. Thanks! I'll report back.