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Ruben Moi

Paul Muldoon and the Language of Poetry is the first book in years that attends to the entire oeuvre of the Irish-American poet, critic, lyricist, dramatist and Princeton professor from his debut with New Weather in 1973 up to his very recent publications. Ruben Moi’s book explores, in correspondence with language philosophy and critical debate, how Muldoon’s ingenious language and inventive form give shape and significance to his poetry, and how his linguistic panache and technical verve keep language forever surprising, new and alive.

Acts of Resistance in Late-Modernist Theatre

Writing and Directing in Contemporary Theatre Practice


Richard Murphet

In Acts of Resistance in Late-Modernist Theatre, Richard Murphet presents a close analysis of the theatre practice of two ground-breaking artists – Richard Foreman and Jenny Kemp – active over the late twentieth and the early twenty-first century. In addition, he tracks the development of a form of ‘epileptic’ writing over the course of his own career as writer/director.
Murphet argues that these three auteurs have developed subversive alternatives to the previously dominant forms of dramatic realism in order to re-think the relationship between theatre and reality. They write and direct their own work, and their artistic experimentation is manifest in the tension created between their content and their form. Murphet closely investigates how the works are made, rather than focusing upon an interpretation of their meaning. Through an examination of working practices, we gain a deeper understanding of the nature of a paradigm shift in theatre launched by late modernism.


Russell Williams

In Pathos, Poetry and Politics in Michel Houellebecq's fiction, Russell Williams examines the literary style of France's most notorious novelist. Houellebecq is frequently the focus of debate for his provocative comments about Islam and the decline of Western civilisation. This book refocuses attention on how such provocation is an integral part of the texture of his novels.
Williams considers Houellebecq's writing about literature and outlines the key principles of the author's poetics, founded on an acute sensitivity to reading experience. He then explores Houellebecq's earliest poetry before mapping this poetic voice into his subsequent fiction, including Sérotonine (2019). Houellebecq's relationship with genre fiction and the crucial issue of the authorial persona that exists in and around his texts are also explored.

Postmodern Pirates

Tracing the Development of the Pirate Motif with Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean


Susanne Zhanial

Postmodern Pirates offers a comprehensive analysis of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean series and the pirate motif through the lens of postmodern theories. Susanne Zhanial shows how the postmodern elements determine the movies’ aesthetics, narratives, and character portrayals, but also places the movies within Hollywood’s contemporary blockbuster machinery. The book then offers a diachronic analysis of the pirate motif in British literature and Hollywood movies. It aims to explain our ongoing fascination with the maritime outlaw, focuses on how a text’s cultural background influences the pirate’s portrayal, and pays special attention to the aspect of gender. Through the intertextual references in Pirates of the Caribbean, the motif’s development is always tied to Disney’s postmodern movie series.

Nietzsche, the Aristocratic Rebel

Intellectual Biography and Critical Balance-Sheet


Domenico Losurdo

Perhaps no philosopher is more of a conundrum than Nietzsche, the solitary rebel, poet, wayfarer, anti-revolutionary Aufklärer and theorist of aristocratic radicalism. His accusers identify in his ‘superman’ the origins of Nazism, and thus issue an irrevocable condemnation; his defenders pursue a hermeneutics of innocence founded ultimately in allegory. In a work that constitutes the most important contribution to Nietzschean studies in recent decades, Domenico Losurdo instead pursues a less reductive strategy. Taking literally the ruthless implications of Nietzsche's anti-democratic thinking – his celebration of slavery, of war and colonial expansion, and eugenics – he nevertheless refuses to treat these from the perspective of the mid-twentieth century. In doing so, he restores Nietzsche’s works to their complex nineteenth-century context, and presents a more compelling account of the importance of Nietzsche as philosopher than can be expected from his many contemporary apologists.

Originally published in Italian by Bollati Boringhieri Editore as Domenico Losurdo, Nietzsche, il ribelle aristocratico: Biografia intellettuale e bilancio critico, Turin, 2002.

Angels in the Archive

Beckett’s Ex(or)cised Celestial Music

Helen Bailey


Beckett’s treatment of the “mixed choir of angels” in Watt complicates the relationship between archive and text. While references to this musical source were largely excised by the author, traces left behind in the published text(s) raise questions about whether it should be discounted as detritus. This paper explores how Beckett’s consignment of celestial music to the archive enacts a form of Heideggerian vermeiden, where the ‘spiritual’ potential of music is revealed only by avoiding its expression. From outside the published work, the choir haunts the text, anticipated though never arriving, yet always already present in its genesis.

Bernard-Olivier Posse


Cet article analyse les relations de Samuel Beckett avec l’ un des poètes phares du surréalisme français : Paul Eluard. Malgré de nombreux rapprochements entre l’ auteur irlandais et le mouvement d’ avant-garde dans la critique beckettienne, l’ appréhension systématique de cette position n’ a jamais été entreprise. Cet article se donne donc pour objectif de tracer un rapide regard sur l’ échange et le dialogue esthétique entretenu par Beckett avec Paul Eluard. Seront mises en avant les traductions du poète français effectuées par Beckett pour la revue This Quarter, ainsi que leurs relations avec certains des textes critiques écrits par Beckett durant les années trente au sein desquels le poète français apparaît, soit en filigrane, soit textuellement.

James Little and Georgina Nugent-Folan

“je crois peut-être que tout est vrai”

Poétique du doute dans la genèse de Fin de partie

Myriam Jeantroux


Le chemin qui mène des premiers manuscrits de Fin de partie à la dernière révision du texte sur la scène londonienne en 1980 est celui d’ un déploiement de l’ incertitude. Cette esthétique de l’ ambiguïté procède par toute une série de gommages et de déplacements qui clôturent l’ espace scénique, rendent équivoque la situation des personnages et donnent à lire, dans le processus même de l’ écriture, une poétique du doute qui interroge l’ origine et le sens de la création littéraire.