"Thought words Words inane Thought inane"Samuel Beckett's critique of language in his four "Novellas"

  1. Carrera de la Red, María José
Proceedings from the 31st AEDEAN Conference: [electronic resource]
  1. Lorenzo Modia, María Jesús (ed. lit.)
  2. Alonso Giráldez, José Miguel (ed. lit.)
  3. Amenedo Costa, Mónica (ed. lit.)
  4. Cabarcos-Traseira, María J. (ed. lit.)
  5. Lasa Álvarez, Begoña (ed. lit.)

Publisher: Servizo de Publicacións ; Universidade da Coruña

ISBN: 978-84-9749-278-2

Year of publication: 2008

Pages: 723-731

Congress: Asociación Española de Estudios Anglo-Norteamericanos. Congreso (31. 2007. A Coruña)

Type: Conference paper


This essay explores how Samuel Beckett's four postwar novellas express in narratological terms what the Austrian positivist Fritz Mauthner's Critique of Language (published at the turn of the twentieth century) expresses in philosophical terms: a profound skepticism as regards the ability of language to convey concepts, emotions or information. We analyse three points of coincidence between the thought of the philosopher and the writer's.