Svenska Teatern

I Would Prefer Not To

One day, a meticulous Wall Street clerk stops working, completely. It’s not a straight-up refusal but a soft one. It’s just that Bartleby would prefer not to do what a clerk is supposed to do. No more proofreading of documents. No more copying. And Bartleby is driving the employer crazy by not giving any explanations for these actions, or inactions.

Marked by irony and subtle identity politics, I Would Prefer Not To is a story about passive resistance, social responsibility and adjustment. Acclaimed playwright-director Milja Sarkola’s adaptation of Herman Melville’s short story Bartleby, the Scrivener has been a critical and commercial success for the Svenska Teatern company.

Who is Bartleby? A renegade? A loose cannon? Is Bartleby depressed? Who is the person who refuses to tell who that person is?


”Above all, I Would Prefer Not To is hilarious – cringingly hilarious, constantly shifting its point of view.”
– Maria Säkö, Helsingin Sanomat newspaper