Abstract

Abstract:

Despite their generic and formal differences, Samuel Beckett's 1953 novel The Unnamable and 1961 play Happy Days register complementary concerns toward the relationship between embodiment and communication. Both texts exhibit aspects of what media theorists and literary critics call the materiality of communication, going so far as to imagine communication itself as re-embodiment: a process in which Beckett's compromised and sometimes indecipherable bodies discover new forms. Considering themselves as observed objects (physical and discursive), Happy Days's Winnie and The Unnamable's narrator reflect upon the material systems that constitute and shape them. This reflexive strategy, both aesthetic and formal, illuminates both characters' estranging physicalities at the same time that it produces them, aligning communication itself with a sense of embodiment.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1529-1464
Print ISSN
0022-281X
Pages
pp. 111-128
Launched on MUSE
2019-10-18
Open Access
No
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