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Beckett, Modernism and the Material Imagination

Beckett, Modernism and the Material Imagination

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Steven Connor
Cambridge University Press, 7/31/2014
EAN 9781107059221, ISBN10: 1107059224

Hardcover, 240 pages, 23.5 x 15.7 x 1.8 cm
Language: English

Steven Connor, one of the most influential critics of twentieth-century literature and culture, has spent much of his career writing and thinking about Samuel Beckett. This book presents Connor's finest published work on Beckett alongside fresh essays that explore how Beckett has shaped major themes in modernism and twentieth-century literature. Through discussions of sport, nausea, slowness, flies, the radio switch, religion and academic life, Connor shows how Beckett's writing is characteristic of a distinctively mundane or worldly modernism, arguing that it is well-attuned to our current concern with the stressed relations between the human and natural worlds. Through Connor's analysis, Beckett's prose, poetry and dramatic works animate a modernism profoundly concerned with life, worldly existence and the idea of the world as such. Lucid, provocative, wide-ranging, and richly informed by critical and cultural theory, this book is required reading for anyone teaching or studying Beckett, modernism and twentieth-century literary studies.

1. Introduction
Beckett's finitude
Part I. Bodies
2. 'My fortieth year had come and gone and I still throwing the javelin'
Beckett's athletics
3. The nauseous character of all flesh
4. Making flies mean something
Part II. Timepieces
5. 'I switch off'
the ordeals of radio
6. Looping the loop
tape-time in Burroughs and Beckett
7. 'In my soul I suppose, where the acoustics are so bad'
writing the white noise
8. Slow going
Part III. Worlds
9. Beckett's low church
10. The loutishness of learning
11. Beckett and the world
12. 'On such and such a day… in such a world'.