In the decade following the success of "Waiting for Godot" (1952), Samuel Beckett wrote some of his most absorbing work for radio. These plays display the author's appreciation of the essential properties of radio broadcasting. They also highlight a profound musicality which, while evident in his novels, poetry and plays, is particularly noteworthy in this medium. This book is an analysis of the contribution made to radio drama by Beckett. In these plays, he is concerned with themes of human isolation and the frailty of memory and communication. He identified radio as an ideal medium for the presentation of these themes and the development of drama which could transcend the limitations of realism. Beckett used music as an essential component of his radio output for a variety of purposes. In this study, the author argues that, while Beckett's radio plays are suffused with a bleak sense of disintegration of language, music offers a sense of optimism. A variety of musical and performance perspectives is utilised to gain a greater appreciation of these radio plays.
Essays on Archives, Philosophy, and Methodology in Beckett Studies
Author: Matthew Feldman
Pubpsher: Columbia University Press
Category: Literary Criticism
The dozen essays brought together here, alongside a newly-written introduction, contextualize and exemplify the recent 'empirical turn' in Beckett studies. Characterized, above all, by recourse to manuscript materials in constructing revisionist interpretations, this approach has helped to transform the study of Samuel Beckett over the past generation. In addition to focusing upon Beckett's early immersion in philosophy and psychology, other chapters similarly analyze his later collaboration with the BBC through the lens of literary history. Falsifying Beckett thus offers new readings of Beckett by returning to his archive of notebooks, letters, and drafts. In reassessing key aspects of his development as one of the 20th century's leading artists, this collection is of interest to all students of Beckett's writing as well as ' historicist' scholars and critics of modernism more generally.
Release on 2016-04-15 | by Sara Jane Bailes,Nicholas Till
Author: Sara Jane Bailes,Nicholas Till
Discussion concerning the ’musicality’ of Samuel Beckett’s writing now constitutes a familiar critical trope in Beckett Studies, one that continues to be informed by the still-emerging evidence of Beckett’s engagement with music throughout his personal and literary life, and by the ongoing interest of musicians in Beckett’s work. In Beckett’s drama and prose writings, the relationship with music plays out in implicit and explicit ways. Several of his works incorporate canonical music by composers such as Schubert and Beethoven. Other works integrate music as a compositional element, in dialogue or tension with text and image, while others adopt rhythm, repetition and pause to the extent that the texts themselves appear to be ’scored’. But what, precisely, does it mean to say that a piece of prose or writing for theatre, radio or screen, is ’musical’? The essays included in this book explore a number of ways in which Beckett’s writings engage with and are engaged by musicality, discussing familiar and less familiar works by Beckett in detail. Ranging from the scholarly to the personal in their respective modes of response, and informed by approaches from performance and musicology, literary studies, philosophy, musical composition and creative practice, these essays provide a critical examination of the ways we might comprehend musicality as a definitive and often overlooked attribute throughout Beckett’s work.
This new edition brings together all of Beckett's dramatic writings for radio, television and film, offering works which range from eloquent comic naturalism to an eviscerated and pared-down symbolism. Above all, Beckett found his unique uses for the radio-play, a medium 'for voices not bodies', compacted of speech, sound and silence - and the plays in this volume intently explore the resources and limits of the sound-stage. My father, back from the dead, to be with me. (Pause.) As if he hadn't died. (Pause.) No, simply back from the dead, to be with me, in this strange place. (Pause.) Can he hear me? (Pause.) Yes, he must hear me. (Pause.) To answer me? (Pause.) No, he doesn't answer me. (Pause.) Just be with me. (Pause.) That sound you hear is the sea. (Pause. Louder.) I say that sound you hear is the sea, we are sitting on the strand. (Pause.) I mention it because the sound is so strange, so unlike the sound of the sea, that if you didn't see what it was you wouldn't know what it was. (Pause.). Hooves! Contents: All That Fall, Embers, Words and Music, Eh Joe, Quad, Film, ...but the clouds..., Ghost Trio, Nacht und Träume, Rough for Radio I, Rough for Radio II, Cascando, The Old Tune Preface and Notes by Everett Frost
A landmark collection showcasing the diversity of Samuel Beckett's creative output The 35 original chapters in this Companion capture the continued vitality of Beckett studies in drama, music and the visual arts and establish rich and varied cultural contexts for Beckett's work world-wide. As well as considering topics such as Beckett and science, historiography, geocriticism and philosophy, the volume focuses on the post-centenary impetus within Beckett studies, emphasising a return to primary sources amid letters, drafts, and other documents. Major Beckett critics such as Steven Connor, David Lloyd, Andrew Gibson, John Pilling, Jean-Michel Rabate, and Mark Nixon, as well as emerging researchers, present the latest critical thinking in 9 key areas: Art & Aesthetics; The Body; Fiction; Film, Radio & Television; Global Beckett; Language / Writing; Philosophy; Reading; and Theatre & Performance. Edited by eminent Beckett scholar S. E. Gontarski, the Companion draws on the most vital, ground-breaking research to outline the nature of Beckett studies for the next generation.
The work focuses on the practical and philosophic sides of performance, set within the context of Beckett's own aesthetic theory, his fiction and poetry, as well as a history of the critical and scholarly studies of his work. Winner of the Bucknell University Press Award.
“On Beckett: Essays and Criticism” is the first collection of writings about the Nobel Prize–winning author that covers the entire spectrum of his work, and also affords a rare glimpse of the private Beckett. More has been written about Samuel Beckett than about any other writer of this century – countless books and articles dealing with him are in print, and the progression continues geometrically. “On Beckett” brings together some of the most perceptive writings from the vast amount of scrutiny that has been lavished on the man; in addition to widely read essays there are contributions from more obscure sources, viewpoints not frequently seen. Together they allow the reader to enter the world of a writer whose work has left an impact on the consciousness of our time perhaps unmatched by that of any other recent creative imagination.