Samuel Beckett and the End of Modernity
Richard Begam
Stanford University Press
Full Description

This study explores the relation between Samuel Beckett's five major novels - Murphy, Watt, Molloy, Malone Dies, and The Unnamable - and the phenomenon that Lyotard, Habermas, and Vattimo have described as the "end of modernity." Through close readings of Beckett's "pentalogy," Prof. Begam shows how these novels, written between 1935 and 1950, strikingly anticipate many of the defining themes and ideas of Barthes, Foucault, and Derrida - from madness and the cogito to the "death of the author" and the "end of the book," from differance and unnamability to the "end of man" and the "beginning of writing."