Samuel Beckett: Debts and Legacies, 2007

A seminar sponsored by the Universities of Oxford and Northampton


                                                Images of Beckett_exhibition  Photograph © John Haynes, 1973    

Following the publication of James Knowlson's biography and the release of invaluable notebooks and diaries for scholarly scrutiny, Beckett Studies is undergoing a revolution. Beckett's major period of intellectual formation was in the 1920s and 30s, long before he became known as a French Existentialist after Waiting for Godot, and even longer before he was discovered by post-structuralist critics. This seminar will attempt to reassess Beckett's cultural position in two directions: by examining some of the recently uncovered influences that shaped his unique writing, and by refracting his image and his work through some of the authors, thinkers, composers and visual artists he influenced in turn.


27 April            Prof. John Pilling (University of Reading)

                        ‘Two Deltas and an Enueg: Beckett's Montale’

4 May               Mr Sean Lawlor (University of Reading)

‘Beckett, MacGreevy and the Stink of Joyce’

11 May             Dr Ulrika Maude (Durham University)

 ‘“Material of a Strictly Peculiar Order”: Beckett, Phenomenology and Perception’

Wed                  Prof. Peter Murphy (Thompson Rivers University, Canada)
16 May             ‘Incorporating Joyce in Beckett's Post-Trilogy Works: Some Minor, Major and
                          Problematical Instances’ (Please note change of day)

18 May             Prof. Lois Oppenheim (Montclair State University, USA)

                    ‘“The bubble on the puddle”: Samuel Beckett's Legacy to the Understanding of Creativity’

25 May             Dr Ashley Taggert (IES, Dublin)

                                ‘Paying Lip Service to Silence: Beckett and Surrealism: Maeterlink and Beckett’

1 June            Dr Sinéad Mooney (National University of Ireland, Galway)

                    ‘“the sear of every metamorphosis”: Beckett and Surrealism’

8 June               Prof. Steven Matthews (Oxford Brookes University)

‘Samuel Beckett, Perception, and Creatureliness’

15 June             Dr Rosemary Pountney (University of Oxford)

‘Some Reflections on Pinter and Stoppard and their Relationship to Beckett’

Seminars commence Fridays at 4:30 p.m., the Collier Room, Regent’s Park College,
                                                Pusey Street, Oxford

Seminar organisers:                    Dr Matthew Feldman                                Dr Erik Tonning

Contact details: e-mail:

                        phone:             07968 991 283 (mobile)                       (01865) 250 826 (home)

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