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A Companion to Samuel Beckett

S. E. Gontarski (Editor)
ISBN: 978-1-4051-5869-5
440 pages
March 2010, Wiley-Blackwell
A Companion to Samuel Beckett (1405158697) cover image
A collection of original essays by a team of leading Beckett scholars and two of his biographers, Companion to Samuel Beckett provides a comprehensive critical reappraisal of the literary works of Samuel Beckett.
  • Builds on the resurgence of international Beckett scholarship since the centenary of his birth, and reflects the wealth of newly released archival sources
  • Informed by the latest in scholarly, critical, and theoretical debates
  • A valuable addition to contemporary Beckett scholarship, and testament to the enduring influence of Beckett’s work and his position as one of the most important literary figures of our time
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Notes on Contributors.

Acknowledgments.

Introduction( Reviewing Beckett (S. E. Gontarski, Florida State University).

Part I( A Life in Letters.

1. A Writer’s Homes – A Writer’s Life (James Knowlson, University of Reading).

2. Within a Budding Grove( Publishing Beckett in America (S. E. Gontarski, Florida State University).

3. Samuel Beckett and Waiting for Godot (Lois Gordon, Fairleigh Dickinson University).

4. Beginning to End: Publishing and Producing Beckett (Barney Rosset.

Part II: Charting Territories.

5. A Critique of Aesthetic Judgment: Beckett’s “Dissonance of Ends and Means” (John Pilling, University of Reading.

6. The Legacy of Samuel Beckett: An Anatomy (H. Porter Abbott, University of California, Santa Barbara).

7. Beckett and Philosophy (Anthony Uhlmann, University of Western Sydney.

8. Philosophizing with Beckett: Adorno and Badiou (Jean-Michel Rabaté , University of Pennsylvania).

9. Beckett and Ethics (Shane Weller, University of Kent at Canterbury).

10. Beckett and Germany in the 1930s: The Development of a Poetics (Mark Nixon, University of Reading.

11. Samuel Beckett and Science (C. J. Ackerley, University of Otago).

12. A Purgatorial Calculus (Beckett’s Mathematics in “Quad” (Brett Stevens, Carleton University.

13. Beckett and Obsessional Ireland (David Pattie, University of Chester).

14. Beckett in French and English: Sinéad Mooney, National University of Ireland.

Part III: Acts of Fiction.

15. Beckett the Poet (Marjorie Perloff, Stanford University).

16. The “Dream” Poems: Poems in Personae (Sean Lawlor, University of Reading.

17. Figures of Script: The Development of Beckett’s Short Prose and the “Aesthetic of Inaudibilities” (Dirk Van Hulle, University of Antwerp).

18. Molloy, or Life without a Chambermaid (Patrick A. McCarthy, University of Miami).

19. Malone Dies( Postmodernist Masculinity( Susan Mooney, University of South Florida).

20. “The Knowing Non-Exister”( Thirteen Ways of Reading Texts for Nothing (S. E. Gontarski and C. J. Ackerley, Florida State University and University of Otago).

21. What We Are Given to Mean( Endgame( Paul Shields, Assumption College).

22. “In the Old Style, ” Yet Anew( Happy Days in the AfterBeckett( William Hutchings, University of Alabama).

Part IV : Acts of Performance.

23. Beckett’s Production of Waiting for Godot, Warten auf Godot) (David Bradby, Royal Holloway, University of London).

24. The Seated Figure on Beckett’s Stage (Enoch Brater, University of Michigan).

25. Clowning with Beckett (Mary Bryden, University of Reading).

26. “Down, All Going Down …”: The Spiral Structure of Beckett’s Theater (Xerxes Mehta, University of Maryland) .

27. Beckett on Television (Graley Herren, Xavier University).

28. Staging Beckett in Spain: Theater and Politics (Antonia Rodríguez-Gago, University Autónoma of Madrid).

Index.

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S. E. Gontarski is Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor of English at Florida State University where he edits the Journal of Beckett Studies and serves as Director of Graduate Studies. He has published extensively on the life and works of Samuel Beckett, including (with Anthony Uhlmann) Beckett after Beckett (2006), a finalist for the Theatre Library Association's George Freedley Award.
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  • Authoritative and insightful, this companion provides a comprehensive critical reappraisal of the literary works of Samuel Beckett
  • Brings together original essays by a distinguished team of leading Beckett scholars, including two highly regarded biographers
  • Builds on the resurgence of international Beckett scholarship since the centenary of his birth, and reflects the wealth of newly released archival sources
  • Informed by the latest in scholarly, critical, and theoretical debates
  • A valuable addition to contemporary Beckett scholarship, and testament to the enduring influence of Beckett’s work and his position as one of the most important literary figures of our time
See More

“In this way, A Companion to Samuel Beckett will indeed be a useful companion and addition to Beckett studies.”  (The Beckett Circle, 1 October 2012)

"This aside, A Companion to Samuel Beckett has much to offer Beckett enthusiasts. The volume as a whole is, indeed, a companion to the centenary celebrations and promises to be one of those collections that will remain important for years to come." (Review of Literature (Weiss), 2010)

"This collection contains some fine individual essays that will be of worth to both new and experienced readers of Beckett's work . . . The latter part of the book is strong on Beckett in performance, in various media, while a remarkable outlier by mathematician Brett Stevens shows that English, French and German are not the only languages to yield a rewarding close reading in Beckett." (Routledge ABES, 2011)

"Coming from a theatre background personally, and the fact that Waiting for Godot is one of my favourite pieces, this book was one of the most exciting and interesting collection of research I have ever had the pleasure of reading.  Take the time and immerse yourself in it, it will give you a new perspective on Beckett when you go back to re-read any of his works." (M/C Reviews, November 2010)

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