Samuel Beckett's German Diaries 1936-1937

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A&C Black, Jun 23, 2011 - Literary Criticism - 245 pages
Six diary notebooks kept by Samuel Beckett during his 1936-7 trip through Nazi Germany were discovered in 1989. Samuel Beckett's German Diaries 1936-1937 is the first study to explore the relevance of these diaries to Beckett's development as a writer. Using the diaries as the central point of focus, Nixon draws on unpublished manuscripts, notebooks, correspondence, reading notes from the 1930s to reflect on both Beckett's creative evolution prior to 1936 and the direction his writing took after his return to Dublin in April 1937. As well as gaining an insight into Beckett's reading of classical German literature, Nixon shows how the pared-down style of writing, the self-examination and the importance of the visual arts that govern Beckett's post-war works traces back to the pages of these notebooks. By illuminating how Beckett's writing and aesthetics underwent a far-reaching change during the 1930s, Nixon's study is crucial to our understanding of the emergence of Beckett as a radical writer in the post-war years.
 

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Contents

Becketts German Diaries
1
1 Becketts Journey to Germany 19361937
6
2 Becketts German Diaries
19
3 Psychoanalysis Quietism and Literary Waste
37
4 Beckett Reading German Literature
60
5 Beckett Nazi Culture and Contemporary German Literature
84
Becketts Notesnatching
100
7 Becketts Journal of a Melancholic and Other Writing
110
Beckett and the Visual Arts
132
Towards a New Aesthetic
162
The Threshold of Words
187
Becketts Travel Itinerary
193
Notes
194
Bibliography
224
Index
239
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About the author (2011)

Mark Nixon is Lecturer in English at the University of Reading, UK, where he is also the Director of the Beckett International Foundation.

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