By L. A. C. Dobrez
The publication fills an important hole in glossy severe stories. Hitherto, there was no thought of try to relate Existentialist idea to modern literature - and this is often accurately what Dr Dobrez achieves, taking 4 top writers and discussing their paintings with regards to Husserl, Heidegger and Sartre. Readers will locate this account enlightening in its dialogue of Existentialism itself and its software of Existentialist rules in sleek literature. hence this publication may be of significant worth to scholars of either modern literature and glossy philosophy.
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Additional info for The Existential and its Exits: Literary and Philosophical Perspectives on the Works of Beckett, Ionesco, Genet and Pinter
How it is, published in English in 1964, is really a prose poem like Finnegans Wake, so that the Reduction focusses on the use of language. There is a protagonist, sometimes known as Pirn, who has the remains of a body and is capable of motion, crawling in the mud of a Dantean landscape, dragging a sack of provisions, edging towards another of his kind: take the cord from the sack there's another object tie the neck of the sack hang it from my neck knowing I'll need both hands or else instinct it's one or the other and away right leg right arm push pull ten yards fifteen yards halt21 When two creatures meet the relationship is hardly more fruitful than others depicted in earlier novels.
Who this Other is, neither the trilogy nor the Texts can say. It is, nonetheless, what Beckett has been concerned with from the very beginning, the source, the mother, the one reality: an "unmakable being". On the whole critical discussion of Beckett's writing has failed to focus on this obscure creature. Where the direction of Beckett's movement has been noted it has been viewed as a search for Self, for the mystery of human identity. But the language and the concepts of psychology are inappropriate in what must be regarded as a properly philosophical context.
Nothing she could tell . . nothing she could think. . nothing she - . . what?. . who? . no! . she! (p. 19) What is called for is, it seems, unthinkable, unable to be told. At one level, the voice is asked to name itself, or rather to identify its true source, beyond the mind of the helpless protagonist. Because it cannot do this and consequently substitutes a story - that of the protagonist - it effectively reduces the entire play to a digression, an evasion of the truth, which has nothing to do with "she", the protagonist.