All life long, the same questions, the same answers.I read this in a hospital This morning The patient was someone I don t know very well It was thought that my presence would afford authority I am not sure about that The senseless ritual of life is unveiled in a drab flourish by Beckett I love it This isn t is powerful as Godot There s no hope here for other than Death There is memory and within that there s reverie, there s a lilting note which conveys Our chores elongate without purification I can sit and ponder the motives of the many gathered in this plush internment I can also sit and not ponder. Samuel Beckett Was Awarded The Nobel Prize For Literature N His Literary Output Of Plays, Novels, Stories And Poetry Has Earned Him An Uncontested Place As One Of The Greatest Writers Of Our Time Endgame, Originally Written In French And Translated Into English By Beckett Himself, Is Considered By Many Critics To Be His Greatest Single Work A Pinnacle Of Beckett S Characteristic Raw Minimalism, It Is A Pure And Devastating Distillation Of The Human Essence In The Face Of Approaching Death The set of Endgame resembles a skull, with two high windows on the left and right This is a play about hell hell in the head as well as that state that might be awaiting us.Everything is grey There is no colour anywhere At centre stage sits Hamm, in a chair on casters, with a bloodied handkerchief covering his dead At left, two garbage cans covered with an old sheet Clov stands at the right, next to a door A picture hangs on the wall, face to the wall The garbage cans contain Hamm s parents, Nagg and Nell, legless and helpless Nell dies about two thirds of the way through the play Clov is Hamm s servant, and there is constant tension between the two of them as Clov wants to leave but cannot There is no yesterday or tomorrow, as they are all locked into an eternal now, although they all refer to wistful memories.There is a marked sense of ending in the play the word end occurs at least nine times in the text and is of course picked up in the title Hamm is like a decrepit king surrounded by a diminished court This is King Lear taken to the extreme He is playing an endgame of chess against the fates, and he is losing Beckett described Hamm as a bit of a monster the remains of a monster.Such action as there is constitutes time filling, and all the characters with the exception of Nell, who is beyond caring are waiting for something, though they have no idea for what This is the human condition stripped to the bone.Beckett s is a hell far removed from Dante s a sordid bed sit rather than an apocalyptic Inferno Something is better than nothing, which is what these characters have It is a hell without god or devil, where the torture is in empty repetition of pointless actions, of not knowing a hell for our times, indeed. We do what we can We shouldn t. December of Drama 2015, day eleven I love order It s my dream A world where all would be silent and still, and each thing in its last place, under the last dust. Begin rant I m getting a little tired, alright, a lot tired, of people ignoring the conclusions reached by literature and philosophy Conclusions Yes there is actually philosophy pessimism that moves in straight lines instead of wearisome, wool gathering circles And there is literature that offers some actionable intelligence, so to speak Many of us in the so called modern age seem to recognize that all this human suffering and death is meaningless, useless, and that to limit the body count we d be better off going extinct sooner rather than later, and yet most people continue to inject fuel into the vast, malignant, death engine by procreating In all honesty, when I see damned progenitors on the street, assuming their spawn to be biologically their own rather than adopted, I feel like I m seeing cavemen Atavistic human beings, who must not know any better, mindlessly obeying animal instinct I ought to be even pessimistic and just accept that the idiots will inherit the earth, and that most humans will repeat history, every minute of the day, forever and ever amen Intelligent life is an oxymoron any intelligent species would opt out of this rigged game.It s really the inconsistency that gets to me When you hear calls for peace on Earth this holiday season, bear in mind what that really means silence Extinction The dinosaurs are at peace As long as we are still around, there won t ever be peace by which I mean an end to suffering If taken to mean the absence of war or conflict, then another kind of suffering would obtain boredom We re in love with conflict To pull a Cormac McCarthy quote, War is God If we truly wanted an end to violence, everyone would have to be sterilized, as I chose to be, and wait for death to finish us off Even with a series as popular as Game of Thrones, when you get the line, There is only one hell the one we re living in now, people all knowingly nod their heads, yet by and large they continue to incarcerate unwillingly created entities in that hell, or support the practice It s madness In truth I ought to just laugh at the absurdity of it all, but part of me can t help trying to point it out End rant.This play is over fifty years old, but it s grown in bitter strength due to the fact that we re still, shockingly, playing the same tired game I didn t rate it five stars merely because it reinforces a belief I ve held for years, but for its effectiveness in dramatizing it Is there any hope for the human race to become the first species to nobly choose extinction, rather than blundering into it Time will tell.Recommendation dump The Conspiracy Against the Human Race, Better Never to Have Been The Harm of Coming Into Existence, Blood Meridian, or the Evening Redness in the West Much has been said about Endgame and the existing literature has almost exhausted its interpretive capacity But for me, Act Without Words is a far grater work in its brevity and universality I loved its each and every moment quite epiphanical It dramatizes the way in which we, as human beings, are trapped by elemental workings of life and how nature creates mirages of desire and fulfillment only to leave us frustrated and unsatisfied The moment when the only character refuses to play according to preset rules of the game by reacting indifferently to the mirage of the water was very thrilling to me and was rebelliously illuminating. Endgame feels, in many ways, like the same play as Waiting for Godot Both plays use the same pair of, respectively, clever and dim witted primary characters Vladimir and Estragon in Godot, and Hamm and Clov in Endgame presented in a gray, macabre setting Knowing this makes it very easy to understand how Beckett structured these two plays, and how his character relations explicate themes cerebral discord allows extensive and recursive banter Personally, I didn t love the play I ve tried to like Beckett, and I do, but I can never seem to get over the weird kind of dreamy aesthetic he uses in his writing I tried his novels, thinking his prose would be less obscure, but they were just as strange I find myself only appreciating him for his wonderful dark humor.I ll admit, though, that this play presents one of my favorite themes in all of literature the dignity of suffering Notice how tribulation is addressed in certain lines for example, Can there be misery loftier than mine Lofty isn t the word most people would think of to describe their unhappiness There are several other quotes from this play that toy with the same idea, but my favorite one would have to be this Hamm What s he doing CLOV raises lid of NAGG s bin, stoops, looks into it Pause Clov He s crying He closes lid, straightens up Hamm Then he s living.Probably my favorite Beckett line ever As if to say that the hurt many of us feel on the point of existence affords us than we realize, and that to feel pain acutely means to feel life acutely. First read through pretty much nothing made sense It was a swirl of madness and confusion.Rereading it reveals layers and depth that elicits examination and interaction with Beckett s post modern themes of meaninglessness and disorder He makes references to The Waste Land, which I thought was interesting While Eliot ultimately reaches Christian conclusions, Endgame circles around nihilistic ideologies of nothingness.I love this play for what questions it sparks within me Reading it from a Christian perspective gives me peace, and I enjoy it thoroughly However, the great problem with postmodernism which Beckett has been considered one of the firsts , is that it s an ideology which leads to hopelessness and despair as it furthered the ideas of Nihilism and Modernism The implication in the end of Endgame is that their lives will continue to circle back around with no escape.I recommend this play for writers or people who like to ask existential questions.Review written Dec 28, 2013 Brilliant poetry Embrace the pauses and sit in the work until it becomes uncomfortable That s the only way to truly enjoy Beckett. Last month, I read Samuel Beckett s Endgame 3 stars so I am just reviewing the second play included in this book, Act Without Words. I still liked it or it is a notch better than Endgame but not as good as Waiting for Godot 4 stars Although there is also the element of suicide here particularly the thought of it and the rebelliousness when the narrator did not move at the ending scene when the carafe or water was dangled within his reach right in front of him.If Waiting for Godot 4 stars and Endgame 3 stars are stage plays and All That Fall and Other Plays for Radio and Screen by Samuel Beckett 2 stars are radio plays, Act Without Words is a mime or a play whose story is told via action So, the play is short with almost no words yet if you check Wiki, it can run from 1 to 2 hours depending on the interpretation of the stage director.The story is about a man stranded in an island or a forest by himself and he is in need of water and food These are either dropped to him from above but the water in taken back up whenever he tries to reach for it According to Wiki, this was Beckett way of retelling the Greek mythology story of Tantalus who is in the center of a pond that whenever he bends to drink, the water level recedes It is funny to imagine that and the scenes in this plan and I could only dream that someday I ll have the chance to actually see this and Beckett plays It should be awesome.The I read Beckett s work, the I admire him All of his works are brilliant and he seemed to have the versatility to try different formats and ideas in his works.
Samuel Barclay Beckett was an Irish avant garde novelist, playwright, theatre director, and poet, who lived in France for most of his adult life He wrote in both English and French His work offers a bleak, tragicomic outlook on human nature, often coupled with black comedy and gallows humour.Beckett is widely regarded as among the most influential writers of the 20th century Strongly influenced
- 96 pages
- Endgame and Act Without Words
- Samuel Beckett
- 27 March 2017 Samuel Beckett