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The eye of the Beckettian present
journal contributionposted on 20.07.2007, 00:00 authored by Sean RedmondSean Redmond, M Wagner
In this article, we take up M‟s closing question from Play, arguing that it is the central phenomenological conundrum in much of Beckett‟s stage and screen work. The question we bring to Beckett‟s oeuvre is: what is the relationship between perception and presence, consciousness and corporeality? To answer „yes‟ to M‟s question – to be is as much as being seen – is to render the body not utterly useless, but periphery, or secondary, merely the flesh of perception. Beckett famously remarked that, in his increasing sense of minimalism, in his desire to „say the least necessary‟, his final work would be a blank piece of paper. In Beckett, does the body suffer the same fate as language?