Samuel Beckett (Foxrock, close to Dublin, April 13rd 1906 - Paris, December 22nd 1989) (Buried with the Cemetery of Montparnasse) is a writer, Poète and Dramaturge Irish of expressions English and French.
If he is the Romance author of S, such as Molloy , Malone dies and Unnamable the and of short texts in prose, its name remains especially associated with the Theater of the absurd, whose its part While waiting for Godot (1952) is one of most famous illustrations the. Its work is austere, minimalist; she is generally interpreted like the expression of a deep pessimism as for the human condition. To oppose this pessimism to omnipresent humor at his place would hardly have direction: they should rather be seen as being with the service one of the other, taken within the broader framework of an immense company of derision. With time, it will treat these topics in an increasingly concise style, tending to make its language increasingly concise and dry. In 1969, it receives with indifference the Nobel Prize of literature, which is allotted to him for “its work, which through a renewal of the shapes of the novel and theater, takes all its rise in the dismissal in the modern man”.
Samuel Beckett was born on April 13rd, 1906. Although disputed, in particular by Deirdre Bair, the date is certain, the event having been announced in the fashionable heading of an Irish newspaper ( The Irish Times ) of April 16th. The family residence, Cooldrinagh, located in easy suburbs of Dublin, Foxrock, were a large house surrounded by a garden, that the father of Beckett, William, had made build in 1903. The house, the garden, the surrounding countryside where Samuel, a length and dry young man, a little embarrassed of his body, equipped with a light blue eye of raptor, often walked with his father, the racecourse close to Leopardstown, the station of Foxrock are as many elements which take part of the framework of many its novels and plays. Beckett is initially raises in Earlsford House School, in the center of Dublin, before entering in Portora Royal School d' Enniskillen, in the Comté of Fermanagh - college which had been attended before by Oscar Wilde.
Beckett studies then French, Italian and English with the Trinity College of Dublin, between 1923 and 1927. It follows in particular the courses of A.A. Luce, professor of philosophy and specialist in Berkeley. It obtains its Bachelor off Arts , and after having taught some time in Campbell College of Belfast, it is named at the station of English reader to the National university, with Paris. It is there that it is presented to James Joyce by the poet Thomas MacGreevy, one of his/her closer friends, who worked there too. This meeting was to have a deep influence on Beckett; it helped in particular James Joyce in his research during the drafting of Finnegans Wake .
It is in 1929 that Beckett publishes its first work, a test criticizes entitled Dante… Bruno. Vico… Joyce. , in which it defends the method and the work of Joyce of which some criticize the obscure style. The close links between the two men were slackened however when Samuel pushed back the advances of Lucia, the girl of Joyce. It is as during this period as the first news of Beckett, Assumption , was published by the influential Parisian literary review of Eugene Jolas, Transition . The following year, he is the prize winner of low-costs literary for his poem Whoroscope , composed with haste, and inspired by a biography of Descartes that Beckett read then.
In 1930, it returns in Trinity College as a reader. He wearies university life rather quickly, and expresses his disillusions in an original way: he mystifies the Modern Language Society of Dublin by reading there an article scholar about a Toulouse author named Jean of the Eye, founder of a literary movement called concentrism; of course, neither of the Eye nor the concentrism never existed, if not in the imagination of Beckett, enabling him to make fun of the literary pedantry. To mark this important turning of its life, inspired by the reading of the Years of training of Wilhelm Meister , of Goethe, he writes the poem Gnome , which publishes the Dublin Magazine in 1934.
After several voyages in Europe, in particular in Germany, it is fixed definitively at Paris little before the Second world war. Its first novel, Murphy , were the subject of thirty-six refusal before being finally published. At the time of the declaration of the war, it is in Ireland. It then regains precipitately France, preferring “France in war in Ireland in peace”. It takes an active part in resistance against the occupation Nazi. It is recruited within the Réseau Gloria SMH by his friend, the normalien Alfred Peron. When the network is denounced, Samuel Beckett, prevented by the woman of his friend Peron, escapes from little from the German police force. He takes refuge initially in the writer Nathalie Sarraute then in the South of France. Beckett learns in 1945 that Peron died after the release of the camp of Mauthausen. According to its biographer James Knowlson, the work of the writer is deeply marked by the accounts of deportation of the comrades of Peron and by the war.
The Années 1960 represent one period of deep changes for Beckett, in its personal life as in its life of writer. In 1961, during a discrete civil ceremony in England, it marries Suzanne, mainly for reasons related to the French successional laws. The triumph that its parts meet brings it to travel in the whole world to attend many representations, but also to take part on the whole with their setting in scene. In 1956, BBC proposes to him to diffuse a radiophonic part: it will be All That Fall ( All those which fall ). It continues to write time with others for the radio, but also for the cinema ( Film , with Buster Keaton) and television. It starts again to write in English, without giving up for as much French.
The Nobel Prize of literature is allotted to him in 1969: he regards that as a " catastrophe" ; in fact, it rejects by there some " industry beckettienne" , with the direction where this reward increases considerably the interest of the university research for its work. Other writers are interested in him, and a constant flood of students, novelists and playwrights pass by Paris in the hope to meet the " maître". Its refusal to receive the Nobel Prize is also explained by its dislike of the society life and the duties which are dependant there; its editor Jerome Lindon all the same will seek the price.
His wife dies the July 17th 1989. Beckett, reached emphysema and perhaps of the Parkinson's disease, leaves in old people's home where he dies the December 22nd of the same year. They are both buried with the Cimetière of Montparnasse, in Paris. Its tomb is a massive black granite flagstone polished, in front of which is an isolated tree, memory of the decoration of the one of its parts.
All the work of Beckett is crossed by an acute apprehension of the tragedy which is the birth: “you is on ground, it is without remedy! ” known as Hamm, the principal protagonist of Fine of part. This condition must be lived all the same fully, with vitality. Because, like he says it to the conclusion of Fin of part , “he is necessary to continue, all must continue”. A direction is to be sought, in spite of all.
Work is a testimony on the end of a world. Perspicacious witness of its time, Samuel Beckett announced the end of art ( While waiting for Godot ) and the one time end marked by preeminence, in Europe, of the French culture ( Fin of part), well before these topics do not become with the mode. Art cannot seek any more to embellish the world as in the past. A certain idea of art arrives at its end. Beckett underlines this hypocrisy in Oh the beautiful days . Winnie is enchanted of a world which knows each day a " enrichment of the savoir" , while in his hand, his/her Willie companion holds a pornographic postcard.
One can roughly speaking divide the life of writer of Beckett into three parts: the first, the first works, until the end of the Second world war; the second, of 1945 with 1960, during which he writes his most known parts; and finally, of 1960 at its death, period which sees the frequency of its publications decreasing, and its style to become more and more minimalist.
The first works
They translate in particular the capital influence that at that time James Joyce has on Beckett. Very érudites, they concern mainly a will of exhiber knowledge and a know-how of already undeniable author. That makes them often difficult to reach. One can quote, as example of his style of then, the first lines of More Pricks than Kicks (1934):
It was morning and Belacqua was stuck in the first off the canti in the moon. He was so bogged that He could move neither backward NOR forward. Blissful Beatrice was there, Dante also, and she explained the spots one the moon to him. She shewed him in the first place where He was At fault, then she could up her own explanation. She had it from God, therefore He could rely one its being accurate in every particular.
The passage abundantly refers to the Divine comedy of Dante, which destabilizes any reader who would not have a thorough knowledge of it. However, one can see already there the advertisement of certain future characteristics of the work of Beckett: inaction of Belacqua, one of the characters of the Purgatory , recurring in all the work of Beckett; its immersion in its own thoughts; irreverence with comic aiming of the last sentence.
Similar elements are present in the first novel published by Beckett, Murphy (1938): it explores there the topic of the madness and that of the failures, which will return often thereafter. The first sentence of the novel reveals the pessimistic tone and the black humor which animate many its works: “The sun shone, having No alternative, one the nothing new”. Watt , writes whereas Beckett hid on Roussillon, during the Second world war, draft of the same topics, in a less exuberant style.
It is as for this period as Beckett launches out in literary creation in French language. At the end of the years 1930, he writes a certain number of short poems in this language, as well as the Nouvelles and Texts for nothing ; the saving in means which is visible there - especially if one compares them with the English poems whom it composes at the same time, in the collection Echo' S Bones and Other Precipitates (1935) - seems to prove that the passage by another language was before a whole process having enabled him to simplify its style by purifying it of the automatisms of the native tongue; evolution what comes to confirm later a few years Watt .
Bilingual workFrom 1944 and until its death, Beckett will write in fact a bilingual work ; it is not a question of a final passage to French but to a coexistence balanced enough between the two languages, with however a certain predilection for French, in particular until the middle of the Sixties. Most of the texts will be translated in the two directions by the author himself, or Edith Fournier, for the translation of English; the near total of work existed in the two languages before the death of the author.
Because in particular of discovered of French, the end of the year forty is one period of intense activity, before any narration (the Nouvelles and Texts for nothing , the Trilogie - Molloy , Malone dies , Unnamable the ); it is also the moment of the writing of While waiting for Godot .
It is in French that Beckett written his most known works; in fifteen years, three plays are a great success: While waiting for Godot (1948-1949), Fine of part (1955-1957) and Oh the beautiful days (1960). They are often regarded as representative of the “Theater of the absurd”, term rejected by Beckett - which did not wish to be comparable with the existentialists - and prone to debate. These parts treat despair and will to survive it, while being confronted with an incomprehensible world.
It is the theatrical work which will have given the celebrity to the writer: afterwards many failures near the editors, it is Suzanne which, in 1953, brings the manuscript of While waiting for Godot to Roger Blin, which puts it in scene. The first causes a real scandal, which it is undoubtedly necessary to look like one of the unexpected causes of the success of Beckett.
These four large known parts mask another reality of the work of Beckett. To the theater, it goes still further, as from the Sixties, in short parts (the various Dramaticules , Comédie and acts , for example) which hold sometimes more installation and Chorégraphie that traditional theater…
But it is still another reality: that of work " narrative" , considerable, quite as experimental and increasingly more minimal with the wire of time: formal, of scholarship or darkness, almost delirious excesses in More Pricks than Kicks ( Band and Sarabande ) or Murphy , gradually yielded the place to the arid sobriety of the Dépeupleur or Compagnie . They are always texts which examine, in one way or another, their own conditions of possibility and put them in crisis, since the usual mechanics of the narration, literally pulverized in the Trilogie , at the end of the Forties, until the possibility “of even uttering”, in the last poem written in 1988, entitled How to say .
List worksWorks of Samuel Beckett are published in the Éditions of Midnight for their French edition. They are published in English at Faber and Faber (theater) or at John Calder Publishers (Romance).
French works(Between brackets after the title, the date of writing, if it can be specified.)
- 1951: Molloy (Romance) (1947)
- 1951: Malone dies (Romance) (1948)
- 1952: While waiting for Godot (part in two acts)
- 1953: Unnamable the (Romance) (1949)
- 1955: New and Texts for nothing (1946-1950)
- 1957: Fine of part (part in an act)
- 1957: Act without words I
- 1959: the Last Band
- 1961: How it is (Romance) (1950)
- 1963: Oh the beautiful days (part in two acts)
- 1966: Bing (1966)
- 1967: Head-dead (written short)
- 1970: First Love (new) (1946)
- 1970: Draper and Camier (Romance) (1946)
- 1970: the depeuplor (1968-70)
- 1976: to still finish some and others foirades
- 1978: , not followed by Four drafts (parts)
- 1979: Poems followed Mirlitonades
- 1980: Company (translated by the author since Company (1978))
- 1981 : Badly considering evil known as
- 1982: Catastrophe (part dedicated to Vaclav Havel, date of writing)
- 1988: the image (years 1950)
- 1930 : Whoroscope (poem)
- 1934: More Pricks than Kicks (collection of tales)
- 1935: Echo' S Bones and Other Precipitates (poems)
- 1938: Murphy (Romance)
- 1953: Watt (Romance)
- 1957: All That Fall (All those which fall) (collecting TV of Michel Mitrani in 1963)
- 1957: From year Abandoned Work (Of an abandoned work)
- 1958: Krapp' S Last Types (the Last Band - part)
- 1959: Embers (Ashes)
- 1961: Happy Days ( Oh the beautiful days - part)
- 1962: Words and Music (Words and music)
- 1963: Play (Comedy - part)
- 1967: Eh Joe (part for television, written in April - May 1965)
- 1969: Breath (Breath - part)
- 1973: Not I (Not me - part written in 1972)
- 1976: That Time (This time - part written between June 1974 and August 1975)
- 1976: Footfalls (Not - part)
- 1976: Ghost Trio (phantom Trio - part for the television, accompanied by the Largo of the 5th Trio for piano (The Ghost) of Beethoven)
- 1977: … Goal the Clouds… (part for television)
- 1982: has Part off Monolog (part, written in 1979 for David Warrilow)
- 1981: Ohio Impromptu (part)
- 1981: Rockaby (Lullaby - part written between the autumn 1979 and June 1980)
- 1983: Worstward Ho ( the Cape at worst the French Translation of Edith Baker (1991))
- 1984 : Quad (part), republished with the Editions of Midnight in 1992 with a text of Gilles Deleuze, “Exhausted” the
- 1984: Nacht und Traüme (part, accompanied by seven last measurements of the Lied of Schubert Nacht und Traüme )
- 1984: What Where (part)
- 1989: Stirrings Still ( Sudden starts , prose written between 1983 and 1986)
- 1992: Dream off Fair to Middling Women (posthumous publication of a new novel written in 1931-1932, partly included in the news of More Pricks than Kicks )
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