Slovo a Smysl (Sep 2019)

Krátké formy v tvorbě Samuela Becketta ve vztahu k otázce poznání | The Short Forms in Samuel Beckett’s Work in Regard to the Cognitive Problem

  • Żaneta Nalewajk

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 16, no. 31
pp. 63 – 70


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Beckett’s epistemological pursuit of brevity can be found even in the titles or subtitles of writings like From an Abandoned Work, Rough for Theatre I and Rough for Theatre II, Come and Go. A Dramaticule, Intermedium or Ohio Impromptu. Para- and/or architextual wordings like ‘intermedium’, ‘rough’, ‘a dramaticule’, ‘impromptu’ or ‘from an abandoned work’ provide further examples of this tendency. The main goal of this article is to present Beckett’s specificity against the background of the tradition of genres and the poetics of the romantic fragment. The author also analyzes the connection between the structure and style of Beckett’s works and their epistemological and aesthetic functions. She presents how, by engaging with Romanticism, Beckett reveals the illusion of the infinite, representing it as a derivative of the human mind rather than an objective quality. Despite this basic difference, the poetics of fragment in the works of this Irish writer becomes a mode of manifesting uncertainty and sometimes even of cognitive incapacity.