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In Transcultural Migration in the Novels of Hédi Bouraoui: A New Ulysses, Elizabeth Sabiston analyses the dominant theme of transcultural migration, or immigration, in Hédi Bouraoui’s fiction. His protagonists reflect his passion for endless travel, and are Ulysses-figures for the postmodern age. Their travels enable them to explore the “Otherness of the Other,” to understand and “migrate” into them.
Bouraoui’s World Literature is rooted in the traversées of his characters across a number of clearly differentiated regions, which nonetheless share a common humanity. The ancient migrations of Ulysses, fuelled by violence and war, are paralleled to the modern displacements of entire cultures and even nations. Bouraoui’s works bridge cultures past and present, but they also require the invention of language to convey a postmodern world in flux.
Reimagining Nineteenth-Century Historical Subjects
This volume explores the many paradoxes of neo-Victorian biofiction, a genre that yokes together the real and the imaginary, biography and fiction, and generates oxymoronic combinations like creative facts, fictional truth, or poetic truthfulness. Contemporary biofictions recreating nineteenth-century lives demonstrate the crucial but always ethically ambiguous revision and supplementation of the historical archive. Due to the tension between ethical empathy and consumerist voyeurism, between traumatic testimony and exploitative exposé, the epistemological response is per force one of hermeneutic suspicion and iconoclasm. In the final account, this volume highlights neo-Victorianism’s deconstruction of master-narratives and the consequent democratic rehabilitation of over-looked microhistories.
Author: Ulrika Maude

Abstract

Beckett’s prose, drama, correspondence and working notes contain numerous references to processes that pertain to unconscious, involuntary bodily functionality and materiality. In this respect, the body’s viscera and their processes cannot properly be said to belong to the subject, and yet everything over which we have agential control is premised on these deeper vegetative or physiological processes; thought and feeling, as Molloy puts it, ‘dance their sabbath’ in the ‘caverns’ of the body. If the conception of the ‘human’ is premised on rationality, then the viscera are non-human, object-like. Beckett’s anti-rationalist emphasis on affective, visceral experience in How It Is (along with the novel’s veiled allusions to Pavlov’s conditioning and Watson’s behaviourism) operates in tension with the more elevated intertextual references that signpost the humanist tradition.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui

Abstract

Eight thematic clusters are used to draw parallels between texts by Samuel Beckett and Roland Barthes that focus on Marquis de Sade and sadism. By examining places like Roussillon and La Coste and themes like Machines, Screams, Order and Reason, the Family, the Law, Class and Lit bodies, one can see better how both writers have worked with Sade’s images and concepts. If Barthes’s theses throw new light on Beckett’s texts like Watt, How It Is and Catastrophe, conversely Beckett’s skepticism facing Reason and narrative forms highlights Barthes’s main writerly strategies.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui
In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui
Author: Thomas Thoelen

Abstract

While the bicycle in Samuel Beckett’s Molloy has received considerable critical attention, the crutches have largely eluded attention. The present essay examines, accordingly, in what ways the crutches are not simply a means for Molloy to compensate for his stiff leg(s) but might be said to constitute his very ‘end’ in the double sense of the word: his death as a human being and his function or purpose as a technical being, as a body of linguistic conventions working to create the illusion of a human being.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui
Author: Emily R. Brower

Abstract

Samuel Beckett litters the text of his despairing post-apocalyptic drama with references to the book of Genesis. Beckett dissolves and diminishes the characters, plot, structure, and even syntax of Genesis as he undermines the world’s beginning in order to portray its end. Significantly, the allusions and references to Genesis are scattered and incoherent, replicating the disintegration of the world through their dissolute form. Endgame intentionally disseminates the texts, stories, and structures of Genesis—as well as its patriarchal family structure—amidst a chaotic, explosive deployment of the Bible itself. The text does more than allude to Genesis and reverse creation; it deconstructs the western world’s foundational text as an integral part of the world’s end.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui
Author: Marc Farrant

Abstract

This essay reads the ungraspable relation to death in Beckett’s works as a means to think through our contemporary era of climate crisis. Beckett’s singular aesthetics of human finitude can be a powerful resource for thinking the unthinkable. By envisaging finitude in terms of the limits imposed on life by both space and time, this essay seeks to ground the existential framework of Beckett’s oeuvre in terms of an always embedded self. Looking at the short story “The End,” I show how such embeddedness may work to evade totalisation or abstraction in terms of a universal worldview, yet also how it poses problems for any privileging of materiality as such. Beckett’s writings are thereby seen to produce a dynamic ethics between world and earth, the global and the local, life and death.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui

Résumé

Avec Fin de partie : scènes et monologues, opéra en un acte, Győrgy Kurtág rend hommage à Beckett : non pas en accompagnant mais en réponse au texte, dont il n’ a été retenu qu’ une partie, la musique et le chant soulignant la recherche profondément beckettienne du silence et de l’ ailleurs. Pour cela Kurtág s’ appuie également sur les résonances créées par le poème “Roundelay,” autre œuvre beckettienne placée en prologue de l’ opéra.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui

Résumé

Dans la première trilogie de Beckett, la dissociation de l’ inventaire et des histoires met en cause le statut des objets et en perturbe toutes les fonctions habituelles. Accessoire, attribut, indice, objet d’ échange ou de quête, objet de savoir, aucune de ces qualités ne se vérifie. Enfin, l’ échec de l’ illusion référentielle réduit l’ inventaire à une nomenclature, et l’ histoire à une narrativisation de la liste. Mais comme le langage ne peut éliminer les signifiés, le roman abstrait reste irréalisable, car la res resurgit toujours derrière le rien.

In: Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui